The cushy life of the Illinois Drivers Ed teacher

Over the past two weeks, we’ve discussed how teachers’ unions obstruct effective school reform. Now we have concrete examples of the ways they waste education funds as well.

In the state of Illinois, for example, there are 138 Drivers Ed teachers who make over $100,000 for a 9-month work year. The highest among them pulls down $164,985.

And that’s just the beginning. There are 710 physical education teachers who make over $100,000, with the best-paid coming in at $191,124. 275 Illinois music teachers are members of the 100K Club as well; they can rub elbows with 20 of the state’s food service workers.

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Bill Zettler at Champion News has the numbers, and makes an important additional point:

These Top 100 Salaries Do Not Include Massive Amounts of Fringe Benefits.

Add about $48,000 each for state pension contribution (30% of salary) and at least $7,500/yr health insurance benefits. Then include 15 days sick leave payable at retirement if not used, 2 personal days/yr and up to $300,000 payment to the Teachers Retirement System by the local school district if they decide to take early retirement….

If we add all these benefits to salaries in order to determine “total compensation” then the Total Compensation for every one of “Top 100 Teacher Salaries” exceeds $200,000/year.

So that’s where education budgets go.

I’m a fan of teachers — I was one myself coming out of college — and believe they should be well paid. But this is ridiculous. At a time when student achievement is on the decline and education budgets are stretched, the teachers’ unions continue to channel much-needed funds to their tenured membership.

[Hat tip: Mark]


  • Brian Saint-Paul

    Brian Saint-Paul was the editor and publisher of Crisis Magazine. He has a BA in Philosophy and an MA in Religious Studies from the Catholic University of America, in Washington. D.C. In addition to various positions in journalism and publishing, he has served as the associate director of a health research institute, a missionary, and a private school teacher. He lives with his wife in a historic Baltimore neighborhood, where he obsesses over Late Antiquity.

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