Thursday, April 5, 2007

Striking It Rich... And Just Striking

The big news yesterday was that by the end of the first quarter, Hillary Clinton had raised $26 million dollars and Barack Obama had raised $25 million dollars for their respective campaigns for president.

Fifty-one million dollars. $51,000,000. That's a lot of money, to buy ads, to print flyers and postcards, to pay campaign workers, to travel, and to do all the other stuff candidates do to get people to vote for them. Not only does not everyone vote for one candidate, but a lot of people just don't vote at all, wasting a lot of that money.


The teachers in Hayward started striking today for better pay. What's at issue is that the teachers want a 16.84% pay raise and the Hayward Unified School District, as of this morning, was offering between 7% and 8.6%. They already gave a 16.84% raise to a couple of superintendents last year and the teachers are asking for the same amount. It should be noted that teachers pay 100% of their health benefits; a teacher I spoke with today said she spends a third of her salary on benefits for herself and her children.

It seems that a lot of students and parents are honoring the strike, with so few students and substitutes showing up at Mount Eden High that administrators tell the students to either go home or work in the school's gym. Parents saw the striking teachers at Lorin Eden Elementary and didn't drop off their kids.

I could not find out how many regular, full-time teachers are in the district, but the Hayward USD includes twenty elementary schools, five middle schools, and three high schools (as well as two adult schools and student assessment centers).

$51,000,000 divided by 33 is a little over $1.54 million dollars per school.

1 comment:

Tea said...

The amounts of money raised for political campaigns makes me mad. I would happily vote for the first person who turned around and donated some of those millions for something important and worthwhile.