Alabama State Senator Shadrack McGill thinks that increasing public school teacher pay isn't just a bad idea. It's possibly an affront to the Will of God. "It's a Biblical principle." He says. "If you double a teacher's pay scale, you'll attract people who aren't called to teach."
Excuse me, but preachers & missionaries get "called." Teachers get paid. From the looks of McGill's spelling ability on his Facebook page, it appears that - using McGill's own logic - his teachers were paid too much. They were obviously interested in something other than teaching spelling.
At the same event, McGill defended the Legislature's 61% pay raise as a deterrent to corruption (not to mention a nice chunk in McGill's bank account):
McGill, R-Woodville, said a 62 percent pay raise in 2007 - passed first by a controversial voice vote and later in an override of a veto by then-Gov. Bob Riley - better rewards lawmakers and makes them less susceptible to being swayed by lobbyists.
Guess he's saying that politicians aren't "called" to serve the public and instead can be swayed by the highest bidder. Tell us, Senator, is that why you ran for the Legislature?
But teachers.... McGill sees a clear difference between teachers and legislators. Yes, most people actually like and respect teachers, but that's not what he meant:
"It's a Biblical principle. If you double a teacher's pay scale, you'll attract people who aren't called to teach.
"To go in and raise someone's child for eight hours a day, or many people's children for eight hours a day, requires a calling. It better be a calling in your life. I know I wouldn't want to do it, OK?
"And these teachers that are called to teach, regardless of the pay scale, they would teach. It's just in them to do. It's the ability that God give 'em. And there are also some teachers, it wouldn't matter how much you would pay them, they would still perform to the same capacity.
"If you don't keep that in balance, you're going to attract people who are not called, who don't need to be teaching our children. So, everything has a balance."
Got that? Talented teachers who expect to be paid decent wages don't understand God's plan for them! They should be willing to accept whatever crumbs fall from the table of our well-paid legislators. The same legislators who are so suseptible to corruption that they have to have public cash stuffed into their pockets to keep them honest.
When we last heard from Senator McGill, he was decrying the "truckloads of pregnant women" sneaking across the US/Mexico border. I hate to say it, but Senator McGill (and Scott Beason roommate) needs to stick to the immigration issue. Heaven help us if he and his roomie turn their sights on "reforming" education.
If you'd like to quiz Senator McGill about his education philosophy, he'll be speaking at Madison County High School library on Monday, Feb. 13 at 6pm. Hope to see lots of LIA folks - and teachers - at the meeting!