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Perdue cuts pay of state employees, teachers

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RALEIGH -- North Carolina Gov. Beverly Perdue has cut the pay of all state employees and teachers by half a percent. Perdue signed an executive order Tuesday that says employees will receive 10 hours of flexible time off in exchange for the loss in pay. She said says the move will save $65 million this year, although that's relatively small compared to the $3 billion budget shortfall the state now expects to see this year. Perdue said in a statement she also has identified ways to close the remaining budget gap. She said that will include more special funds, tapping the state's Savings Reserve Account and using federal recovery dollars. The Democrat said the economic crisis has forced her "to make difficult decisions." (Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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State employees

I read that Bev Perdue was cutting teachers' salaries. My husband is a retired firefighter, and I was wondering since they are also state employees if their pensions are going to be cut also. That would be a huge blow since he is disabled and has Medicare through my SS, as the firemen did not pay into Social Security.

Teacher Pay Cuts

My husband is a school teacher in NC. Due to a bone marrow transplant, I'm having to take several months off from my job. We have two children. Upon reviewing my youngest child's classroom packet for this year, I just realized that our family now qualifies for the federal reduced lunch program on his teacher's salary!! WHAT A SHAME!

Pay cuts

I work for the school system and I am very upset about the pay cuts too! When I first heard about the pay cut I understood that we had a very dire economic situation. Then when I saw on the news about Mary Easley receiving an 88% raise and Bev Perdue "creating" a job for Bill Harrison as CEO of schools for $265,000 per year, I was LIVID. Especially when this "CEO" job is totally unnecessary. This is why NC can't pay its bills, because jobs are created for the friends of people in high places. As for the lottery, blame that on Mike Easley. He earmarked a lot of the money to be spent on creating the "More-at-Four" program for preschoolers. I understand the importance of early intervention but why create something new when you can't pay for what you already have. He also agreed to alot of pay raises for teachers when he knew the state really couldn't afford. He should have earmarked some of the lottery money to be spent specifically for raises of teachers and other state employees. When we were getting these raises it was great but I knew that we would have to pay for it. And now that's what is happening. Mrs. Perdue is rolling back all of these raises.

salary, furlough, and way to save $ for NC

I am not a state employee; but, my husband is. He has worked almost 21 yrs. with the state. Now his salary is being cut .5% per month and probably 10-20 days furlough. Yes, I am thankful he has a job. It is difficult with his full pay check to make ends meet. I'm on medical disability and my monthly check is no where what my check was when I was able to work. I don't understand why only state employees are the only ones being required to fix the budget. Let all NC residents participate. The state can save $ in several ways. State vehicles should be driven home only if the person is on call. Instead of mailing W-2 forms to the employees, place them in an envelope and give to the employee with their check stub at the end of Jan. That will save a lot stamp money. Mail only to the employees that are no longer working with the state. Stop taxing cigarettes. Start taxing ALCOHOL. These are just a few things that can save and/or make money for the NC.

gov

state employees havent had a rasie in 4 years or more it is time to get her out and the gernal assembly we need new fresh faces but when it came to rasies the genral assembly votes for their rasies and leave every one slse out no more years for perdue i will make my vote count let every state employee stand together we are tired of the lies and the promises that were made doing election time and forget all about what was promise with gas going up and food and people losing their homes and now cutting salaries how can we hold on to what we work so hard to own and make ends meet so lets stand together and voice our opinion together lets be heard

From a college students perspective..

I vote we put Bev Perdue in a Kindergarten class room with 32 students (you know, the number of students going to be in a classroom next year due to the cut of teachers being employed and our growing population) for one week, without a teacher assistant (because they have all been laid off). And in this same week, she will live off the salary of a teacher(including her half of percent pay cut she gave to all state employees). Remember, of course, she would have to set aside a good portion of that money to put her two daughters through college (because apparently you make enough money so you don't receive financial aid). And all in this same week, I want her to find out that her underpaid husband (also an employee of the State, who also received a pay cut) could possibly not have a job as of July 1st (because of the job cuts in the Department of Labor). I am a college student, and needless to say I will not be following in the footsteps of my mother, my aunts, or my cousins as the profession of a teacher. It's a shame, I have the upmost respect for teachers due to the stress and long hours I learned as a child while watching my mother as a teacher. The State of NC has once again lost another teacher, but in a different way. Mainly because my family begged me to change my major this past year. From a college student's perspective there needs to be a heads up for the future of our schools: The majority of us "education majors" are all switching out. Once we get out of this "economic crisis" you will not have anymore "new" teachers to hire.

Pay Cut

I am not a teacher, but I have worked in education for 15 years. My background is not in teaching, but in another area which serves students. I can honestly tell everyone that teachers do not receive the salary that they should be entitled to. They work long hours, with little thanks, and with very difficult students, as well as administration in some cases. It is very easy to say "well you should have not been a teacher if you wanted to make more money." There is a big difference between making more money and making a decent living. Teachers, as well as most school personnel DO NOT make a decent living. I have known teachers that have had to take second jobs to get by. I will never understand why working people should have to sacrifice more and more, while those who come to this state illegally are given what ever they want. Ms. Perdue, why don't you take away services from illegal aliens and use that money to help with the budget deficit instead of punishing working men and women?

Teachers today....

... have my respect for what they have to do, just like parents today. Back when I was a kid, if I spoke back to my father or mother, I would not be able to sit down for an hour or so due to the severe pain I had in my back side. Same at school... if there was someone that the teacher had trouble with, they would be sent to see the principle and he would either break out the "meat grinder" paddle and let you have it, or would call your parents (or both) and when you got home it was also time for a follow up corrective action. Since we have become the land of the offended now days... children can't be punished and so they run rampant. Not all are problems I agree, but those that are a problem can't be dealt with in any form of capitol punishment.

I have heard the argument

I have heard the argument for years that teachers in this state are underpaid. I am not a teacher and have never had any interest in becoming one. Therefore, if I knew they were considered underpaid, then surely if someone wanted to pursue a teaching career in this state, they should definitely be aware of that prior to spending the money for college to become one. Every line of work in this country is in trouble to some extent. I work in customer service and due to the fact that we have lost numerous customers due to the economy, we are all being asked to leave early and take additional unpaid time off. It is a matter of taking it voluntarily or people will begin to lose their jobs. We are all struggling but we are all still employed. When I took this job, I knew what the rate of pay was. If I didn't want to work for that amount, I would not have taken the job. I don't care if you are a sidewalk sweeper, a teacher, or a rocket scientist. Everyone has bills to pay and everyone needs their money but we don't always get what we want or need. There is no draft for school teachers. It is common knowledge what and how they get paid. Don't want to work for that? Don't become a teacher. It is that simple.

Your right - No one tied us

Your right - No one tied us up and made us become teachers. I can honestly say that I chose this career on my own. HOWEVER, I did chose a career with a set pay scale. A pay scale that went up (if only a little bit most times) every year. A pay raise that I could count on. Now, we, teachers, have been on a pay freeze for three years. Think about it - what if every August your boss came to you and said, "You were suppose to get this raise this year, but you won't be getting that raise, because we need your money! By the way - we will be adding more state EOG's for you to prepare the students for and new school wide programs for you to teach, more hours after school will be required of you, and we want you to do that with less supplies and money." THIS IS NOT WHAT WE CHOSE!!!!! They are taking OUR money so people like you don't have to help balance the budget. You think you would be more sensitive to our situation. Remember teachers help create the workers for every job in America. There were teachers who helped you learn so you can have the job you have now. Try being a little more appreciative not demeaning!

P.S. Life is NEVER simple!!!!

You are correct...when I

You are correct...when I decided to be a teacher I knew what the pay was and that I would not be rich. So what did I do?...I went back to school, furthered my education, working on my 3rd degree now only to have already lost enough pay to negate my 2nd degree (oh but guess what...still have to pay for it).. AND...I am in the middle of earning my 3rd degree only to find out that the next round of cuts will be - "Hey, we are not going to pay for advanced degrees!". Kind of frustrating to get three degrees only to make less than I was making with one. Yes I did know what the pay was for a teacher and was still willing to become one. Not willing to take a 15k cut though.

Sure, the economy is bad. We all have to take a hit. Wouldn't have a problem with that if we ALL took it. Instead, if you are lazy...get welfare for life. Have they taken a cut? Doubt it. If you run a crappy business (Banks, Auto industry) the govt will bail you out. We will cut pay everywhere - unless you are a politician. Nope...you vote yourself a raise in the midst of ECONOMIC COLLAPSE!! And not to mention, we can't cut the "Go Fish campaign". Lord knows we have to get the word out to fish. That is worth 20 mil.

Oh and since we are making cuts..lets spend more money so everyone can have free health care. Nobel as it may be, I don't hear congress offering to line up. Nope - they will no doubt keep what they have.

Your right..it is that simple.

Neither fairness nor reason

Neither fairness nor reason nor simplicity are considerations when the rich want to cheat the poor. They have all the power. On a whim they can and do take what they want.

Additude

It's a good thing everyone doesn't have this additude or there would be no decent teachers to education the future of our county. The unfortunate fact of the furlough is the grading, and phone calls, and end of the year packing, documenting, and preparing for the following year has to get accomplished so even though we may be at home because we are not getting paid, we are STILL working!!! This is not a job where you get to go home and are just home... sometimes the work can't wait until tomorrow!

It's not the pay.

It's not the pay, it's the kids. This job has its stresses and long hours but it has many rewards when seeing the kids bloom. And no, many of us won't have jobs now.

That's great an all....but

That's great an all....but what do you do when your boss suddenly tells you he is cutting your pay and making you take time off without pay? That isn't something that anyone plans on happening to them. Yes teachers know their pay isn't the greatest, just like law enforcement (public service) and that is why they make such a big deal when someoone not even involved in what they do decides to cut their pay and benefits even more

The value of Education in NC

I agree, I do not feel NC values education on bit. My daughter is graduating next week. She told me a year ago, she wanted to teach. I have done everything in my power to discourage it, or at least discourage her from teaching in NC. The pay stinks, and all we ever hear is "the kids must pass the test in order Federal Funding is not taken away from the school". Just remember, these students will one day be your NC Represenatives, county commissioners, ect. What we invest or do not invest in our schools now, will be reflected in our politians 20, 40 years from now.

Finally, an intelligent post

Finally, an intelligent post concerning this sorted mess. I agree 100%.

RIGHT ON

I am with you on this. Don't let the teachers go. Every parent should be calling the local reps, and the governor's office. and letting them know. where is the lotto money, red light money, tax $ where is it

Teacher jobs on the line.

Thousands of teachers are up to loose there jobs in the efforts to help NC balance a budget. Thousands more individuals thrown out to the streets looking for jobs that are not there as the growing unemployment has shown. My husband (many years experience in construction) has been beating the pavement for months. Finding new jobs for all these teachers will be slim pickin's, thus the alternitive is to draw unemployment. So the state still pays teachers, but now for doing nothing. Now, I have been notified that my position as part time drama teacher is being eliminated. I must say, I'm not surprised; the arts are usually the first cut (dispite all the research proving their benefits on improving test scores). My heart bleeds for the children. When I left the principal's office with this news, it was not the fact that my family will be now surviving on a part time weekend job I keep at the hospital because part time teachers don't get benefits. Rather, it was when I thought about the children in my classes. It's those "troublesome" students that don't learn as well in traditional classes that just bloom when they find that there is always something for everyone in the theater. It was dreading saying "Good-bye" for the last time to these students, knowing that all that faces them in the coming academic years is testing, testing, testing in this cookie cutter mold of an education system that we have developed that allows no room for individual talent. I love teaching. It's not about money to me. I have found a new passion in life that equals my passion for the theater. Teachers either love it or hate it. Those who hate it stick with it because they have time invested for retirement. If the state really feels that less teachers will save our state, have they considered offering incentives for early retirement? Still, larger classes in rooms that are already too full to even slide one more desk into seems the opposite as what our President who holds the strings to federal funds is pushing for. He expects to hold teachers up to high standards and if results are not made then the teacher alone takes the fall. No parent blame, no congressman or governor who pushed the classroom sizes to unmanagability, just the teacher. Talk about pressure. Why would anyone want this stress. I'll tell you why. IT'S ALL ABOUT THE KIDS!

It is all about the kids...

You said many of the things I wanted to say. Its not about the money, even though I did not appreciate a pay cut 8 months into my contract. However, even on my worst day, I go home and feel like I have made a difference and I feel good about teaching. I was notified three days before school was out that my contract as a 6th grade ELA teacher would not be renewed because of the budget cuts. That last few days were hard ones as my students expressed how much they loved me and my class. I did not burden them with my bad news.

Have you ever stepped foot

Have you ever stepped foot in a classroom? Has half of the people who are making these riduculous laws ever stepped foot in a classroom? Try taking off coats of 24 kindergarteners, teaching them how to do math, how to learn to read, feeding them snacks, trying to teach them the tedious task of sounding out each word trying to help them learn how to write (times 24 kids each of them holding their hand up saying your name over and over and over) then getting all their hands washed for lunch, having them stand in a line quietly, opening 24 milk cards, 24 mustard packs, cleaning up three spilled milks, making sure they all are eating their food before they eat their ice cream, having three kids come up to you asking you to take them to the bathroom, swallowing your one bite of food whole, then getting them all the throw their food away, get in line, go to the bathroom, get them back in the classroom, read a story with the three in the back of the row picking on each other, getting all their homework ready in their folders, while writing a note to each of their parents about how good (or bad) their child was at school today and then getting all their coats on (24 kids) making sure they have their backpacks, lunchboxes and a library book to read at home, lining them; one line of bus riders, one line of car riders, one line for Good News Clubs, walking them all down the noisy hall to their destined places to make sure they make it safely home telling each of them goodbye with a smile....... YOU EXPECT ME TO DO EVERYTHING I JUST SAID WITHOUT AN ASSISTANT?????? Seriously. Teacher

YES !!

We expect you to do ALL of that you mentioned plus we are going to raise health insurance deductibles, copays, cut out your annual eye exam, do away with field trips, teacher assistants, assistant principals, cut resources that you need such as copy paper, cut your pay illegally,add duties to your job description, work longer hours, give you "flexible" furlough time and then make it "not flexible", then threaten your job for next year so that you dont know if you are going to be able to pay your bills after june, or know if you are going to be able to afford to keep sending your daughter to college or your car that you drive, or the house that you live in, and if your husband works in the school system too, well, we expect you guys can find a job, after all, there are plenty out there.

I don't know if your comment

I don't know if your comment was a joke are not, but I will say this. I am a Teachers Assistant.I took a big cut in pay this year,but I did not leave the job. There are children in these schools that need us. Believe it are not sometime that TA is the teacher!! You have some sorry so called teachers. If it was not for us some children would never get that extra they deserve.

cuts

Doesn't matter where your spouse works really - they are making cuts everywhere in both the public and the private sector. Granted, a lot of us didn't have a huge pay cut taken out of one check, but a lot of people on these boards have either lost their jobs altogether or been cut back to a point that when we were living relatively comfortably before, we are now stretched way beyond our means. Just remember that a lot of people are out of work completely.

Why?

I guess I am not understanding why we need teacher assistants now, back when we were growing up they did not have teacher assistants and the teachers did just fine and with a smile. So yes I would expect all that done without an assistant.

Back in the day kids

Back in the day kids actually behaved because they got punished at home and at school. Look around, children tell their parents what to do and try to do the same at school. Teachers hands are tied because all we can do is reward good behavior and look past the bad behavior. All of this is done without another adult in the room along with bathroom trips, tattling, hitting, talking, etc. and we must teach them and keep in mind their are at least 25 children. Try it and then see what you have to say about not having teacher's assistants.

WHY??????

Well back in the day..... you did not have autsitic childrne, emotionally disturbed children, behaviorial issues, Personalized Education Plans, Individualized Educaiton Plans, English Second Language, End of grade testing, Student Success TEams, Assessment walls, foster children who attack their teachers, low income children who are beat all the way to the bus so they can have just a wonderful day at school...theives that steal what little bit of gross motor equpiment you have, administrators breathing down your neck telling you to do more more more when the kids just can't do it. The average classroom has 3 children with some type of disability, special need, or language issue. The lessons you plan must reflect that. Class size is upwards of 30 children and one teacher whose only means of punishment is to send a note home, call the parents who typically become numb to the calls and don't do anything about it anymore. 180 days of this. I love teaching don't get me wrong. But it is almost as if the state wants us to fail because they are taking what little support we do have away. come spend a week with me just observe and then tell mme I don't need an assistant. Walk a mile in my shoes and then talk to me.

Why?

Why? Because student behavior is so different from even 5 or 10 or 15 or 20 years ago. If you don't know this - then you have not been in a classroom. I go to visit my daughters school and it is amazing! There are kids who honestly should not be allowed there! They are rude, disrespectful, and aggressive! Not like I knew in school - but down right pathological! Teachers have become prison guards in some schools! It is frightening!

Really?

Step into a classroom. Spend one day volunteering your time in a Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd or 3rd grade. That teacher would have you put to work cutting out things, filing, grading papers, helping with snacks, helping with art projects, helping read to a a student who is struggling...etc. I challenge you to volunteer ONE day then come back and tell me we should cut out all of our teacher assistants.

WHAT ?

Back when you where in school, you were a student, i'm sure you would have a different perspective if you had to fill in for a teacher in today's society. Things have changed since then.