In the attached article one statistic jumped out at me: “out of every new dollar set aside for public education in Illinois in the last five years, a full 71 cents has gone to teacher retirement costs.”
That’s sustainable. I assume that the teachers would at the very least like to keep the exorbitant benefits, but perhaps they want even more. They rejected a 16% pay increase over 4 years, in the midst of a vicious recession.
The truth is that in many places in this country schools exist more for the adults than for the children. This seems clearly the case in Chicago as graduation rates are under 60% yet pay is 50% higher than the average household in Chicago. If 2 Chicago teachers were married, on average their household income would be $146,000 before benefits, or almost 3 times the average household pay in Chicago.
Who pays for this? The taxpayers of Chicago. But the cost is even more dear for the children of the Second City.