Letter: If it were up to me, you walk out; you’re fired


I agree that K-12 teachers are not paid nearly as much as they should. But they also are not flipping burgers for minimum wage, and name me one other profession that affords a 2+ month “break” every year.

Yes, teaching is not 9-to-5. In some ways, it’s closer to 24/7. And let’s not forget pension, general healthcare benefits, and more, eh?

However, if you choose to be a K-12 teacher, you know from the start that you are not choosing a profession that will fill your bank account.

It’s a labor of passion, not profit.

How a man or woman who has dedicated himself/herself to this calling can abandon said initial dedication at the risk of the students he/she wants to teach is beyond me.

Alas, when the union speaks, the Eloi listen. Shame shame shame on teachers who put their pocketbooks before their pupils.

If it were up to me, you walk out; you’re fired.

Michael Westlund



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CatherineMEd 8 months, 4 weeks ago

Michael, teachers have watched the systematic defunding and destruction of our public school system over the last decade and have reached the end of their patience. Our government won't stand up for our children. Voters won't stand up for our children. Somebody has to draw a line in the sand. The future of our state depends on quality education, which costs money! Do you really want an education system that primarily depends on adults who have absolutely no training or experience in teaching? That's where we're headed. This legislature has already passed the law allowing unqualified "teachers" to teach. They had to do it!!! There simply weren't enough qualified teachers willing to work for the pathetic salaries available in Arizona. It's easy for you to say you would fire these teachers. But will you fire the legislators who have caused the problems that the teachers are protesting? Will you?


azsteve1962 8 months, 4 weeks ago

Mr. Westland, I fear you are misinformed about exactly what it is the teachers are trying to achieve with this walkout.

Yes, they've stated they want higher wages, but only if it comes with a return to 2008 levels of overall spending on the state's education system. They want to reduce overcrowding in classrooms, and perhaps be able to teach students out of textbooks that aren't 25 to 30 years old. They wants desks that aren't broken, and basics like pens, pencils, and paper available to students, without having to pay for these items out of their own pockets. They want to increase the academic performance of the state's students in relation to how other states state's students perform when funded properly.

Please learn more about the real issues that are at stake with this walkout.

Steve Warren


BillBassett 8 months, 4 weeks ago

You know who does not find it necessary to protest for higher salaries and walk out? Prison guards. We can either pay teachers what they deserve, or just keep hiring correctional facility workers. Haven't you heard? Prisons are the new growth industry.


BillBassett 8 months, 4 weeks ago

You know who doesn't need to protest and walk out for better working conditions and pay? Prison guards. Correctional facilities are the new growth industry in Arizona. So, we can pay up front or pay the costs of a poorly educated citizenry in the form of public assistance, food subsidies, and yes, tragically even prisons.


pattycake 8 months, 4 weeks ago

and after you fire everyone then what ? how do you plan to replace them


Lonecowboy 8 months, 3 weeks ago

Return the school system to the ones who pay for it. Twenty percent pay raise is not good enough? Even 100% wouldn't satisfy them. The walk out has nothing to do with quality Education and every thing to do with politics. Teachers are influenced by the deep state to overturn duly elected officials. THAT is what it is all about.


Pfalbo 8 months, 3 weeks ago

You have it backwards, Michael.

IMO, Shame, shame, shame, on people who make lower taxes and their bank accounts more important than educating their children.


pinonbistro 8 months ago

I pay for the school system and I am happy to do so. And I support the teachers' right to demand basic resources and living wages for one of the most important jobs in this country--that of an educator of our next generation. Arizona can do a whole lot better. I know I grew up here and our education system was among the best in the country now it is among the worst.