Wednesday, March 05, 2008
Yes, That's a Dead Pelican
I teach for three different institutions. Two public, one private (I’m working on a post on for-profit higher education, whole other story). The school I’ve been with the longest, we’ll call it School A, has a very strong teacher’s union, and as this union cares about its part-timers, it's gotten us a pretty good hourly. Not the top in Calif, but close. Now Arnie-Baby is messing with education at all levels here, and many cuts will be made in a few weeks at the elementary through high school levels. You will hear the screaming all the way to the East Coast, believe me. It’s affecting higher ed too.
Anyway, my new place, School B, is nice, good facilities, friendly people. But I got my first paycheck, and the hourly turns out to be quite a bit less than I expected. I’m totally shocked. (How, you ask, can you agree to work for a place when you don’t know the hourly?… state institutions are Byzantine—you tell yourself, “hey, I’ve got a terminal degree,” they must respect that fucking piece of paper and all the years of experience I have…) Even a PhD with 30 years of experience who comes to work part time for B gets the same low pay!
Teaching is really starting to FRY ME. I’m so exhausted most days, I spend all my free time prepping lectures and answering student emails. Now this pay. We’re public servants, yes, but there’s a limit.
Don’t even get me started on my first art history exam, which I gave a few days ago and is taking me about 10 hours to grade. Example: Give three reasons prehistoric peoples would have painted in caves. “For business.” "Because they didn't have pen and paper." "For kicks."