If the shoe fits! The AP-Olympian article on Feb. 2 says our State Patrol troopers are unhappy, underpaid and understaffed, with many opting out for higher paying, more respected jobs. Further, troopers don’t feel valued nor do they think the bureaucracy takes their opinions into account.
To address this, two GOP legislators proposed bills to “attract and retain” the best personnel with a 7.5 percent raise, differentiated salaries based on location (higher living costs in some areas), bonuses to keep experienced folks from retiring, and modifying retirement plans as an incentive.
Agreed. Something has to be done; they deserve it and we need them.
Now, for the word trooper substitute the word teacher, and the shoe fits. Teachers have low morale, are in short supply (as are substitutes); they don’t feel their opinions and experience count in educational decisions at the state and national levels, and retirees haven’t had an inflation adjustment for a long time.
Apply the same logic, and same fixes, to teachers as you would to the WSP and watch things improve for teachers and schools.
Listen to and apply the considered opinions of educational professionals when making systemic changes, from testing to class size to curriculum; watch morale and student efficacy improve.
Some say that troopers put their lives on the line every day and thus it’s different. Surely a decade of shootings in schools nationwide, including Lacey, shows that educators do too.
Time to step up and fund both; society needs and deserves both.