Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Why Would ANYone Want to Teach in Texas?

Why, when we have two Republican State Reps in Austin right now filing bills that will not only reduce retirement benefits to teachers,  things that they have come to expect as a done deal, but also reduce their health insurance benefits?
Why would anyone even think of going to school to teach in Texas?
The Teachers Retirement System (TRS) is the only retirement system that teachers are allowed to participate in. Social Security is available to teachers in only a few places in Texas.
So TRS has a monopoly here.

But two bills, SB 1458 in the Senate by Sen. Robert Duncan (R-Lubbock), and its companion in the House, HB 1884 by Rep. Bill Callegari (R-Katy) have been filed to raise to age 62 the minimum age for retirement with full benefits and decent health coverage. Right now the age is 60, and one must meet the ”rule of 80” which is a combination of age and number of years teaching.

These are benefits that are already earned by teachers and snatch them away without due compensation. This isn’t even legal in the private sector. But it seems that the conservatives who run state government have an eye to further degrade education in Texas by making it increasingly undesirable.

But that’s not all. If one retires before the minimum age, pensions would be cut 5 percent for each year prior to age 62, even for employees who meet the rule of 80, and only catastrophic health coverage would be provided. Have high blood pressure because of 30 years teaching in public schools? Thanks, but the cost of the meds to keep it under control is all on you now.

And as I intimated earlier, no one worth his or her salt would want to take on extra work, lower pay than in the private sector, no respect, and now even retirement benefits that are being cut back.If equivalent cuts in Socials Security and Medicare were being contemplated in Congress people would be screaming bloody murder. But to do the same thing to teachers, apparently is not a big problem.

Why would ANYone want to teach in Texas?


No comments: