And then I see the late-model, fully-equipped cars and SUVs in the school parking lot.
With tongue in cheek, I ask, What are you thinking? Those cars undermine your argument that the salary is inadequate. They scream to patrons and passersby that you may not really need a raise - and these particular patrons may not realize that you have a significant other, or a gracious family who is subsidizing your educational mission.
Come on, people! Leave that car at home. Reserve its use for other occasions. Don't let it see the school yard.
The last thing the teaching community needs is for the word to get out that we're rich!
The same might be true if you spend your own money on your classroom. I mean, five bucks is one thing, but if you feel the need to put hundreds or thousands (or hundreds of thousands) of dollars into decorating your classroom, if you think your room has to be Pinterest-worthy, if you feel like you have to compete with the genius in the classroom across the hall, if you believe you have to pay for all of your own alternative seating (or whatever the current classroom fad might be), then you probably should take a day to think.
Pour yourself a cup of ice-cold chocolate milk. Dunk a few Oreos. Take a breath. And think.
With all of our complaints about not getting paid like professionals, don't you see why? Why should anyone pay us more if they can just pay us less and we'll make up for the difference. Why should they pay us more when we have so much expendable cash. We show our hand far too often in this fashion - so often, in fact, that there's a special place on your income tax form to write in how much you spent on your class. What other profession has a special line on the tax form, people? I propose that's because they know - or at least suspect - that we are suckers.
Thankfully, I have always worked in districts and schools who have taken care of me. Our PTAs have always provided me with more than I deserve, and if I think of something too late for reimbursement, I can put it off for next year. My profession has given me 27 years to spend other people's money, and if I do it well, I can get by.
If you're in a position that doesn't take care of your class, I'm sorry to hear that. Maybe you can be the solution for your school or your district.
Now hop in that Porsche and get on home to your family!