Past and present

Don't use the children against us for your argument

Re: Shon Thomas’s complaint about how they have to fight the world to get a raise.

Don’t tell us about how you have to fight the province to get a raise. Tell us about how much you earn. How high is your salary for the year? What benefits do you get as a teacher? How many perks do you get? How much time is actually spent teaching children? How much time is spent outside of school activities where they aren’t learning reading, writing and arithmetic?

Tell us about all this and then see what kind of reaction you get. Make us aware of how hard you work. Don’t use the children against us for your argument.

The school I went to was a one-room school. All eight grades were taught in this one classroom. There were approximately 28 to 30 children.

Classes began at 9 a.m. until 4 p.m., with one hour for lunch and two 15-minute recesses. For those six-and-a-half hours, we were taught our reading, writing, literature, etc. No wonder we turned out so well.

This one teacher taught us for 10 months of the year, with one week for Christmas and one week off for Easter. Believe me, that’s a lot of hours of teaching.

The perks this teacher got were a house, car and fuel for heat and light. Could our teachers of today do this? Now, to me, the women and men of yesteryear were teachers. They worked hard and taught us well.


L.M. Neufeld, Vernon