Husband Of Ex-Teacher Explains Why Teachers Shouldn’t Have To Pay For Parking
A repost of a viral comment made by the husband of an ex-teacher has been making its rounds around the Facebook stratosphere.
Presumably incensed by MOE’s new policy, he makes a compelling case for why teachers should not be paying for parking, due to their already crippling workload.
You can read his heartfelt post on Wednesday (27 Mar) here in full, we summarise his observations after the jump.
Hidden costs associated with teaching
Tan Ben introduces himself as the husband of an ex-teacher, and asks “all [his]teacher friends” to stop doing the following activities due to the “fair wages policy”.
He goes on to list numerous things which teachers provide for their students and parents, outside of their original jobscope, to support his case.
1. Money spent on gifts & prizes
Teachers typically spend on Children’s Day gifts, class prizes, class treats, encouragement cards and motivation posters to help their students.
2. Additional study resources
Revision notes created by teachers in their downtimes in evenings, weekends and holidays, require additional work.
3. Classroom decorations
Class charts, decorations, posters and photos are also paid for by teachers to brighten up classrooms and enrich learning environments.
4. After hours marking & lesson planning
Marking, planning for lessons and setting papers may encroach “protected time” in the school holidays.
5. Responding to parents after class
Doing follow-ups via text messages, emails and phone calls with parents after the slated working hours at 5pm, is taxing for teachers.
Furthermore, costs of mobile and internet data are not reimbursable as utility bills are not sponsored by MOE.
6. Additional remedial lessons
Supplementary lessons and consultations with students are usually done after school, to assist them during key exams.
7. Helping students with financial difficulties
This could refer to costs incurred when buying students with financial difficulties food and drinks, or snacks for excursions.
Teachers should be paid for non-teaching duties
Tan Ben elaborates by saying that teachers should stop doing these activities after their official working hours:
- Sacrificing family time to bring students for competitions or overseas trips
- Returning to school on weekends to conduct workshops for parents
- One-to-one parent-teacher meetings
- Administrative duties involving proposals and procurement
Unless, of course, they are paid their dues.
A signal from “top management”
He ends with a stern warning for teachers to learn to be “more fair to themselves”, as “some people at HQ” continue to ignore “ground feedback” as they implement new policies.
This results in a situation where teachers keep making “unseen and unheard sacrifices” which parents and students are not aware of.
Tan Ben concludes with his fear that the greatest losers in this situation would only be our children — as teachers continue to be pushed to their limits.
Leaving the system
Like many other ex-teachers, Tan Ben says his wife is no longer part of the system.
She’s currently happier taking on a less stressful job as a private tutor, with better remuneration.
To pay or not to pay
The common theme throughout Tan Ben’s post is definitely the heavy workloads we’ve handed to our educators in Singapore, coupled with the lack of proper remuneration for services rendered after hours.
As for whether it’s worth it to enforce parking fees on teachers, we’ll leave that up to you, our discerning readers to decide.