Before I go any further I must point that I have the utmost respect for teachers. I believe they are underpaid and undervalued in our society. These people are helping to shape the minds of future generations and they need to be commended for this public service.
Now that I have that out of the way, I want to point how ridiculous this infographic was that I saw the other day on facebook.
I agree with that last part that says treat them well and whatnot, but I am sorry, I do not feel bad for teachers because of the hours they keep.
Standard Teaching: 8 Hours. But it is not like they are teaching for eight straight hours. There are lunch breaks. Elementary teachers have some recess time. High school teachers have moments between periods or study halls.
One Hour Before/After: Do they do this every day? I do not remember my teachers sticking around each day to talk to students. Hell, most of them got out of the parking lot before traffic got bad from the students and buses. I am sure some teachers do this, but I doubt they do it every single day.
3-5 Hours: I would expect many teachers use their study halls/recess time to grade papers and get some of this work done. Yes, the parent-teacher conferences and mandatory meetings suck, but I will get to that stuff in a moment.
I am a general manager at a restaurant. Here is my typical day:
Standard Work Day: 10 Hours. Managing a restaurant is non-stop. Every part of my day is structured. I do not have a mandatory lunch break, I eat when I get a free moment. Half the time I eat my food cold because I had to go help an employee.
It is quite typical for a restaurant manager to get stuck an hour after their shift ended. I cannot even mention all the times this happens because for some it happens daily. You may have to work on schedules each week or maybe work on figuring out budgeting for the upcoming month. There are all sorts of things that you have to do that sometimes carry over to your free time at home.
What if the manager coming in after you gets sick? Well we do not get sick days per se. You need to have someone cover the shift though, and what if no one can? There are no substitute managers to call. You get to stay and work a double. We try not to screw each other over, so we generally come in sick and on the verge of death.
The summers off? This is the part that pisses me off. They have to go to work during the summer. Oh no, that is horrible. Let me explain how my schedule works. I get two days off each week. One weekend off each period. We go by periods instead of months. They are 28 days and there are 13 of them a year. Teachers get pretty much every weekend off. We are closed for Thanksgiving and Christmas. We close early Easter and Christmas Eve (and if the Steelers make the Super Bowl).
So with the holidays, I get 106 days off. There are no spring breaks, fall breaks, Christmas vacation, or anything else. Those are my days off. I get three weeks of vacation time, which brings that total to 121 days.
Oh and that part about how teachers are a mom/dad/nurse/protector…yeah, I do all that too. I have employees ranging from 15 to 65. They all need to be treated as individuals. If they get hurt, I have to take care of them. That is just the employees, that says nothing about the people eating there. I have seen people fall and break bones. I have been working when people have died. I have also had someone bring me in their soiled underwear because they shit themselves on the drive home and believed it was my fault.
I am not saying this because I want pity or anything. I chose this lifestyle and I actually enjoy my job. However, I am sure that every other profession out there can bitch about how they are underpaid and how much they have to work.
I know that this will anger many of my teacher friends (I guarantee at least one teacher will read this and make a comment on here or on facebook pointing out a spelling or grammatical error, and then a joke about how my teachers did a poor job or something), but everyone out there has a tough job, we just do not thrust it in your face every fifteen seconds.
Maybe we all need an infographic…