We often take teachers and the work they do for our children for granted. But the fact is that teachers work hard and are under-compensated, and it’s important to recognize and appreciate their effort.
To that end, Oracle Academy launched a program this year to grant scholarships to first-time attendees of the annual Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA) conference. It’s one of the world’s best professional development opportunities for CS teachers and would-be teachers, offering three days of useful learning that can be taken directly into the classroom.
But many teachers have no professional development funds to tap for events such as this, and must fund them from their own pockets. So this year, Oracle Academy launched a scholarship program — which gives teachers $1,000 each to offset conference registration, travel and hotel expenses.
CSTA received more than 300 applications for only 20 available scholarships.
Wage Gap for Teachers
The scholarships are so sought after and so appreciated because the teacher wage gap in the United States is growing. A recent study by the Economic Policy Institute found that female teachers in 1960 earned 14.7% more than women in other comparable positions – but today teachers across all genders earn 17% less than others in comparable jobs.
According to the study, the average teacher’s weekly pay actually went down $30 (adjusted for inflation) between 1996 and 2015, and experienced teachers have suffered greater pay deterioration than new teachers.
So take a moment to stop and thank a teacher. They deserve it!
Kim Jones is the Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Curriki. Kim is active in driving policy initiatives and is regularly featured as an honorary speaker on the impact of technology in education at influential meetings around the world. Learn more at Curriki.org.