Lisa Benson by Lisa Benson

Lisa Benson

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  1. mikefive

    mikefive said, over 2 years ago

    ^Of what value is a contract if the wherewithal to fulfill it isn’t available?

  2. Respectful Troll

    Respectful Troll said, over 2 years ago

    Teacher tenure, in theory, is a good thing that protects a good teacher who has been an effective educator from being callously released in order for the city/state to avoid paying for that teacher’s pension. Teacher tenure, in practice, has often protected calloused and cynical educators who are no longer effective and who look at their students as burdens to be endured rather than as our future leaders and workers. “Last In,First Out” has…IS… hurting new teachers of all ages who have paid colleges for the degrees needed to become teachers.
    Teachers are one of the most unappreciated people in our society, and yet as we grew up, few of us can look back without recalling specific teachers who helped us to be better thinkers, better people.
    It is my understanding that Last In, First Out has forced at least one “Teacher of the Year” out of teaching in favor of other less effective teachers.
    Mikefive is right. A contract lacking resources has no value. But cities and states MUST find a better way to appreciate those teachers who inspire students to not only learn, but to WANT to learn.
    My thanks goes out to Mr. Humphries, Coach Wilson, Mr. Walsh, Ms. Ourednik, and many others. I hope all of you reached your retirement and found your pensions to be well funded and protected. You made me a better person and I appreciate you all.

  3. Ted Lind

    Ted Lind GoComics PRO Member said, over 2 years ago

    The tenure concept for primary and secondary schools is ridiculous. At that level teachers are teaching kids the basics. They are not exploring controversial concepts that would endanger their jobs. I do think there should be some level of protection for long term employees but our current tenure system is way over the top. Teachers should be evaluated as are most other people in the work place on the basis of how well they do their job.

    The current pension system is also unsustainable. They can defend their constitutional right to a pension (something all the people paying their salary do not have.) but in our state there simply is not enough money to pay for it. Schools are the majority of our property taxes and they get additional funding out of state income taxes. I would rather let their pension go bankrupt than see my taxes substantially increase so they can enjoy a much better retirement than the people paying the freight.

  4. Ted Lind

    Ted Lind GoComics PRO Member said, over 2 years ago

    In Illinois there is a constitutional amendment that protects government pensions from ever being reduced or diminished in any way. The unions use it to thwart any meaningful attempt at reform. I don’t have a problem with not affecting people who are retired or near retirement because they played by the rules, but the system needs to be changed going forward to something sustainable.

  5. Longplay

    Longplay GoComics PRO Member said, over 2 years ago

    Outlook not very appealing.

  6. The Wolf In Your Midst

    The Wolf In Your Midst said, over 2 years ago


    Can I use that logic for my credit-card payments?

  7. TripleAxel

    TripleAxel said, over 2 years ago

    Those are good ideas. We are learning the hard way a lesson we should have known from the beginning – that long-term retirement plans shouldn’t be directly managed by a series of union-beholden politicians.

  8. Respectful Troll

    Respectful Troll said, over 2 years ago

    Thank you for your reply to Mr. Lind, 1953.
    I listened to an interview of an author whose newest book was about how, up to the mid to late 90’s, nearly all pensions in the USA were so safe and secure as to be able to protect all employees covered to the age of 100 and have money left over for more.
    I wish I could recall the title or the author, but apparently, lobbyists convinced Congress that pension funds would be even BETTER funded if they were able to invest in “broader” financial products. I think United Airlines was the first company that lost their ability to pay pensioners after their bankruptcy showed they had used pension accounts as well.
    Anyway, up until the late 90’s, most pension accounts were protected from the greed and abuse of those managing them and Congress failed the American people by opening up the door to allow such abuses to take place. This was done without any real consequences to those who abused the accounts though it forced people who thought their retirements were secure to have to find work in order to survive, not just to add to their retirement.
    I’ve been enjoying many of your comments. You have an insightful mind and a tone that makes it easy to appreciate your position even at times where there might be disagreement. In this case, I assure you there is none.

  9. mikefive

    mikefive said, over 2 years ago

    @The Wolf In Your Midst

    Sure, it’s called lien or bankruptcy.

  10. piobaire

    piobaire said, over 2 years ago

    When society decided teaching should be a profession, it decided that new teachers needed four year college degrees, and master’s degrees in many states.

    It was deemed important that teachers give professional-grade service to the children. However, they told the teachers, we can’t pay you like other professionals. We can’t pay you like we pay people with similar responsibilities. We can’t pay you like we pay people with similar credentials.

    So, what society offered to make up the difference in salary were good benefits and a good pension. It offered job protection, so that people who were dedicated and worked hard and long wouldn’t lose their jobs for unjust reasons and with those jobs their houses and the chance to send their children to college.

    Now, large sectors of society want to go back on their promises. They want ever more and ever better service for the kids, but they don’t want to pay for it.

    What do you think the effects will be?

  11. Uncle Joe

    Uncle Joe GoComics PRO Member said, over 2 years ago


    “Sure, it’s called lien or bankruptcy.”

    I’m guessing you’re smart enough to know the difference between Chapter 7 & Chapter 13 bankruptcies. For those that haven’t had to worry about it, Chapter 7 can eliminate all unsecured debt: credit cards child support, student loans, etc. Of course any secured debt is still there. Your car & house are gone if you can’t make the payment. IN order to file for Chapter 7, you must convince the court you are truly destitute. Chapter 13 only let’s you defer or (if you’re lucky) negotiate down what you owe.

    Despite what some may think, the State of California has considerable revenue.

  12. Uncle Joe

    Uncle Joe GoComics PRO Member said, over 2 years ago

    “google “new york city school rubber rooms” it’s not what you think.”

    Sigh. There is certainly a problem with schools that shuffle bad teachers, but the truth is that any principal willing to put in the effort to document a teacher’s failure to perform can fire that teacher. Most principals find it easier to push a teacher out through other means, though those teachers generally surface at another school. Of course, many principals push teachers out simply because they questioned their bosses’ stupidity.

    I wonder when people will catch on to the fact that charter schools often hire the refuse of public schools…

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