Misleading ChartEditor: How misleading! Joan Tyner's...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

April 07, 1991

Misleading Chart

Editor: How misleading! Joan Tyner's Perspectiv commentary, ''Issue of Teacher Salaries Assumes New Scope'' on March 24, although at times insightful, missed the mark because The Sun chose to insert a table of ''State Teacher Salaries.'' This table represented the top of the pay scale in every county -- these are salaries teachers earn after having taught at least two generations of students.

Unfortunately, The Sun continues its ''teachers and greed'' slant,

but it ignores issues in education.

Edward W. Veit.

Baltimore.

The writer is president of the Teachers Association of Baltimore County.

____________

Editor: Joan Tyner's feature on teachers' salaries (March 24) gave an inflated picture of their compensation. Unfortunately the reality is not so generous.

The chart of salaries ''for teachers with a master's degree plus 30 semester hours'' failed to list the years of experience needed to qualify for the salaries shown. Teachers in Howard County, for example, cannot earn the $50,113 in the chart until after they have taught 24 years. At five years they earn only $32,811 with a master's plus 30.

To suggest that teachers may be overpaid belies the sad fact that the average salary paid teachers in Maryland is $36,319 even though 84 percent have taught more than 10 years, and 81 percent have at least a master's degree or equivalent.

Tyner also faults supposedly high-paid teachers because schools ''fared poorly in the state's first annual performance rating last November.'' Schools will continue to fare poorly for reasons unrelated to teacher salaries because the State Board of Education has deliberately set its ''standards'' too high for the resources provided, so that schools will fail its ''report cards'' and feel pressure to improve.

It's like trying to raise mileage standards for cars without redesigning their engines.

Our schools need a fundamental restructuring with greatly increased staffing levels to end assembly-line learning and give students the personal attention they need to succeed.

It may not be ''realistic'' to talk about higher funding for schools in a recession, but neither is it realistic to talk about ''reforming'' our schools without first expanding their faculties to eliminate the crowd-control treatment of students.

Teachers are the program. To suggest that we can divert money away from teachers to expand the program betrays an ignorance of what goes on at school.

Jane R. Stern.

Baltimore.

The writer is president of the Maryland State Teachers

Association.

Schaefer-Bashing

Editor: The ongoing campaign, by your reporters an columnists, both in print and over the local airways, against Gov. William Donald Schaefer has raised some questions with me as to your intentions.

I am not a fan of Governor Schaefer, but your slant seems to indicate your perception of a growing imbalance in his behavior. Are you reporting on a medical condition or are you exacerbating the condition by reporting on it?

Was the governor's trip to Kuwait an affront to our legislature, or a real effort to bring much needed business to the port of Baltimore? Is Schaefer-bashing in vogue because of Governor Schaefer or because of The Sun? Please tell me what good is to come out of all this, because frankly, I don't see it.

Phillip Kastal.

Baltimore.

7/8

Iraqi Squabbles

Editor: There seems to be some concern by the Bus administration that the uprising in southern Iraq, with the support and encouragement of Iran, will gain ascendancy there and then institute the sort of radical theocracy that was responsible for the taking of the hostages in Teheran.

I don't know why they are so worried. There is a demonstrated solution at hand: befriend and re-arm Saddam Hussein to put them down.

Then after they have bloodied each other for a couple of years, declare Saddam Hussein to be a demon and send the airplanes back over Baghdad -- just in time to elect Dan Quayle as president in 1996.

, It worked before, didn't it?

F. de Sales Meyers.

Reisterstown.

7/8

Lilly Livers

Editor: Perhaps, as your editorial of March 25 suggests, close scrutiny of cables between the State Department and April Glaspie in Baghdad might clear up some confusion. But certainly, April Glaspie, the U.S. State Department and Saddam Hussein are just part of the problem.

Ms. Glaspie's inquisitors in the House might be included asignificant parts.

What hypocrisy of Rep. Lee Hamilton to question whether we sent a strong enough signal to Saddam. Mr. Hamilton and his ilk gave the best impersonation of jello imaginable during the hearings on the military option. If Saddam Hussein was fearful of U.S. action prior to his August invasion, Mr. Hamilton's impassioned plea for no military option laid those fears to rest. And Mr. Hamilton chides Ms. Glaspie? Had we followed Mr. Hamilton's lead, the systematic butchery and pillaging of Kuwait would still be going on.

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