Letters: Paycheques and public servants

Teachers’ “paycheques and perks” should be compared to other hard-working, selfless public servants like nurses and police officers

Re: “Both sides urged…” letter to The Progress May 28, 2014

Mr. Kelly expressed dissatisfaction and frustration over the negotiation process/progress between the BCTF and BCPSEA, and ends his letter by flippantly stating that he “would have loved to get the paycheque and perks the teachers and politicians get.” People may have the right to their opinion that teachers are well-paid, vacation-saturated whiners, but they should at least get some basic public facts right.

A quick Google search provides the current salary/wage of teachers, police officers, and nurses. Disregarding extra pay for various shifts that teachers are not eligible to receive (nights, evenings, weekends), using a 40-hour work week (which is unusual for any of the above-mentioned groups), and adjusting for a 10-month pay period as most teachers do not work (and therefore are not paid) over the summer, here is a quick comparison:

As of April 6, 2006 the salary grid for teachers, based on 10 increments over 11 years of full-time employment, lists an entry salary for a teacher with five years of post-secondary schooling as $40,776; the same teacher will “max out” at the end of 10 years at $64,116.  If teachers earn their master’s degrees, their maximum income after 10 years of teaching becomes $70,269.

As of April 2, 2013 nurses, with a minimum of a four-year bachelor degree, have a nine-step wage scale starting at $31.71 per hour; this translates to an annual salary of approximately $50,000 based on a 40-hour week over 10 months.  Their wage increases are based on hours worked; so, using the same formula, they would experience three increases over the 10-month period, and reach their maximum wage of $41.63/hour or $66,000 for 10 months within three years of full-time employment.

I don’t know how long it’s been since Mr. Kelly was a working police officer, but as of January 1, 2014 an entry level salary (adjusted for the 10-month work period) for an RCMP constable with a high school diploma is $42,228.  A constable will have five pay increases over three years to reach a maximum salary of $67,590.

Teachers’ “paycheques and perks” should be compared to other hard-working, selfless public servants like nurses and police officers, not politicians.  Teachers, nurses, police officers – in addition to a multitude of other public and private sector workers – deserve to be paid a fair wage, and to work in safe and reasonable conditions; more importantly, they deserve a fair and respectful process by which these basic rights are negotiated with their employers.

Cori-Anne Klassen

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Online submissions now open for virtual Chilliwack Fair

No fee this year to submit entries for food, arts and more in 148th annual Chilliwack Fair

Handgun pointing complaint draws strong RCMP presence at Chilliwack residence Wednesday night

One in custody after brief standoff involving Emergency Response Team and canine unit

Iconic Chilliwack store passes clothing racks on to downtown neighbours

Chilliwack Mission Thriftstore given racks and fixtures as downtown store closes for good

Exercise and cancer to be explored via webinar

UFV’s Dr. Iris Lesser to lead Zoom event for cancer patients and supporters

Overnight closures for Vedder dike gates this summer rather than full closure

Working with anti-dumping and angling advocates, City of Chilliwack came up with compromise

Horgan says B.C. restart making gains as more people come out of their homes

B.C. announced the easing of more restrictions on businesses, recreation and travel last month

Police nab three impaired drivers in one night in Maple Ridge

Ridge Meadows RCMP served 80 impaired driving infractions in June

Conservationists raise concerns over state of care for grizzly cubs transferred to B.C. zoo

‘Let them be assessed now before their fate is sealed,’ urges B.C. conservationist Barb Murray

B.C.’s COVID-19 job recovery led by tourism, finance minister says

Okanagan a bright spot for in-province visitor economy

National Kitten Day aka the ‘purrfect’ day to foster a new friend

July 10 marks National Kitten Day, a special day to celebrate all things kittens

Lower Mainland YouTubers claim to be Kelowna display toilet ‘poopers’

RCMP can not speak to legitimacy of video, will be investigating

Haida matriarchs occupy ancient villages as fishing lodges reopen to visitors

‘Daughters of the rivers’ say occupation follows two fishing lodges reopening without Haida consent

Conservatives say police should be called into investigate WE charity scandal

Trudeau is already under investigation by the ethics commissioner for potential conflict of interest

Amber Alert continues for missing Quebec girls, 6 and 11, and their father

Police issued the alert for Norah Carpentier, 11, and Romy Carpentier, 6, from Levis, Que.

Most Read