Anyone could be excused for thinking that public schools — especially in large cities — are a massive racket.
Huge urban school districts around the country continue to suck in enormous quantities of money, creating a sluggish and gargantuan bureaucracy that is entirely deaf to the needs of parents and students. Because the whole mess is financed by the taxpayer, who will be made to fund schools regardless of their performance, there is no incentive for anyone in the system to do a good job
Teachers’ unions negotiate cushy contracts that allow incompetent and useless teachers to remain employed and collect salaries, even though students learn nothing in their classes and find every experience with them hellishly boring.
And the story with school administrators is even worse.
A recent report by the Washington Examiner has exposed the horrendously rotten and corrupt nature of the Baltimore public school system, adding even more evidence to the mountain for those who think that the arrangement is not designed to help kids.
Bloated Salaries for Useless Administrators
Perhaps the most egregious instances of this shameless corruption lie in the salary figures for many of the major officials in the Baltimore public school system.
In total, there are 1,307 officials in the system making more than $100,000 per year. Of these officials, 316 are teachers. The highest-paid teacher in the system makes $156,601 per year. In 2018, however — just three years ago — less than half that number of public school teachers in Baltimore were making more than $100,000 annually.
Has the performance of Baltimore’s public schools really risen so dramatically in the last three years as to justify these extraordinary increases in salary?
Of course not.
One unnamed high school student at Augusta Fells Savage Institute of Visual Arts, in fact, earned a 0.13 grade point average and yet somehow managed to rank in the top half of his class. This, alas, is not an unusual circumstance in Baltimore.
Tiffany France, the student’s mother, thought her son would be graduating this year but has learned that he would not be. Despite failing many of his classes, the system was promoting him to higher versions of those classes. “His transcripts show he failed Spanish I and Algebra I but was promoted to Spanish II and Algebra II. He also failed English II but was passed on to English III,” reported the Washington Examiner.
Many other students were in a similar situation. The Baltimore Public School District is the fifth-best funded in the nation on a per-student basis, despite achieving consistently dismal results. Yet self-serving officials continue to complain that the problem is a lack of funding.
To add further insult to injury, the highest-paid school official in Baltimore, Baltimore City Schools CEO Dr. Sonja Santelises, makes $339,000 per year.
The sad reality is that the teachers and administrators at these schools simply do not care about helping students. They just want to collect a paycheck. If possible, the heads of teachers’ unions care even less. How could it be otherwise when the pay of school officials is in no way linked to their and their students’ performance?