Opinion: Recession Affects Teachers

Every year, it seems our class sizes just seem to get larger. Now, students may not particularly mind, as it simply results in a larger chance of having a friend in the same class.

This optimism, however, is not shared by those who are actually in charge of the classes—the teachers. For instance, if three teachers presided over one subject, cutting one results in the remaining assuming the extra load.

The consequences? Limited time schedules, increased workloads, and reduced individual attention become the offspring of wanton budget cuts.

California holds no monopoly on this crisis. A survey conducted by the American Association of School Administrators states, “44 percent of all school districts expect to increase their average class size” as a direct consequence of the America’s current economic. And despite economic assistance from the stimulus plan, the education budget remains insufficient to prevent layoffs around the nation.

However, opponents assert that the quality of the teacher’s instruction, not class sizes, remains the major factor in student education.

“All the research suggests the number of kids is much less important than who is teaching the class,” says Stanford Researcher Eric Hanushek, who believes an increase in class sizes is understandable during economic hardships.

But the financial morass is not limited to grade school education. The University of California (UC) institution plans to decrease available openings to up to 30 percent in some schools. The state budget cut may dissuade students from accessing higher public education.

Charged with possibly the most important role of society, teachers are the ones that mold the minds of children.

However, it is a result of our country’s economic recession that we are actually forced to relieve many teachers of their jobs. One can only hope that despite everything the educational system is going through, the future will hold a brighter prospect for teachers.

 

This opinion was written by Wayne Ho. The views of this author do not reflect the views of the Temple City Voice or its staff. It was published in the July 31, 2009 edition of the Temple City Voice.

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