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Republican senator wonders how inner city teachers 'got their degrees'

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In an interview with Donald Trump Jr. on Thursday, Alabama Republican Senator Tommy Tuberville questioned whether inner-city teachers knew how to read and write, saying he didn’t know how they got their degrees.

The senator made the comments on Trump Jr.’s podcast, motivatedas part of a lengthy conversation between the two about the GOP’s 2024 presidential option, his former career with the FBI and a football coach.

“Covid really showed how bad our schools are, and how bad our teachers are in the inner city,” Tuberville told Trump Jr. I’m honest with you I don’t know if they can read and write. They want pay raises and less time to work, less time in school. We have ruined the work ethic in this country.”

The pair also discussed continuing some 196 Department of Defense (DoD) military appointments, according to figures recently announced by Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, who announced that the DoD aims to fill gaps in reproductive care for service members. Will implement many new policies from and their families. Tuberville has been blamed by Austin for stalling the nomination, with the senator saying he would continue his stance “until the secretary implements his new policy to facilitate taxpayer-funded abortions for the military and their family members.” do not cancel or suspend the

Tommy Tuberville: “How bad our teachers are in the inner city. I don’t know how they got their degrees. I don’t know if they can read and write. They want pay raises and less time to work, at school Less time. We’ve ruined the way we do things in this country.” pic.twitter.com/DeQbo6islQ

— Ron Filipkowski (@RonFilipkowski) May 26, 2023

Senator’s spokesman Steven Stafford told newsweek Tuberville—a strong school choice advocate—was specifically referring to Baltimore, as 23 of the city’s schools recently reported zero proficiency in math, according to local news station WBFF, who said via email Friday. Was.

Stafford cited other examples that fit Tuberville’s criticisms, including 55 schools in Chicago with not a single student proficient in math, and 33 schools without a single student proficient in reading, which Fox reported earlier this year. News reported. Stafford also noted how four out of five Washington DC students are not proficient in math, two-thirds are not proficient in reading and writing, Axios reported last year.

“The list goes on,” Stafford said. Koch is far from the first person to criticize inner-city schools, and critics know it. Can critics really say that our current education system is successful? As Koch said in the interview, he One of the reasons he ran was his compassion for children trapped in failing schools. Unlocking opportunities for young people as a coach and a mentor for 40 years, he witnessed the remarkable decline of our education system and Found it very dangerous.

Amy Marlowe, executive director of the Alabama Education Association (AEA), told newsweek via phone that Tuberville’s comments Thursday sounded “cheap political sound,” and that he and the other teachers expected more from him considering his background in football and working with youth.

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Senator Tommy Tuberville, an Alabama Republican, attends a Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, on Sept. 14, 2022. Tuberville, in an interview with Donald Trump Jr., on Thursday questioned whether the inner-city teachers knew to read and write, saying that he “doesn’t know how they got the degrees.”
Drew Anger/Getty

“It is truly disappointing and unbelievable that Senator Tuberville feels this way about the hard working men and women in Alabama schools,” Marlowe said. “We have always been encouraged and hopeful that we can forge a working relationship with him given his work with young people during his coaching career. Thoughts are sorry. It’s sorry. Very disappointing.”

He also questioned whether the senator was aware of what happened in his own state based on his comments on the pandemic. Marlow explained that teachers statewide worked with the governor’s office and state health officials to become the first state in the country to go back to in-person instruction.

“It is discouraging to think that at a time when fewer and fewer young people are going into one of the most essential professions in the country, that one of our national leaders would go on the record with his personal views about the profession. going. They’re not private anymore,” Marlowe said.

According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2021, the median annual salary for teachers in the United States is over $61,000. The range falls between $47,169 and $68,884, dependent on factors including education, certification and years of tenure.

Meanwhile, Zip Recruiter estimates that as of last Friday the average inner city teacher in the US makes $49,235 per year – or $23.67 per hour, which equates to $946 per week or $4,102 per month. According to the recruiter website, the highest annual inner city teacher salary by state is Wyoming at $51,911 per year, and North Carolina is at the bottom at $35,640. Alabama’s inner city teacher salaries are approximately $45,182.

A December 2022 report from the Economic Policy Institute (EPI) showed that nearly 96 percent of all public K-12 teachers had at least a four-year college degree, while nearly 56 percent had advanced degrees. The pandemic had previously exacerbated the existing national teacher shortage, further straining teachers who were already concerned about poor compensation and stress levels.

Randy Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers (AFT), said, “Senator Tuberville’s smearing of teachers, teaching, and knowledge is nothing new, but this cacophony of stereotypical, dehumanizing tropes hits a new low.” newsweek Friday via email. “He can only wish for the skills and knowledge that teachers have, whether they work in urban Birmingham or urban Brooklyn. They are devoted to their craft, dedicated to meeting the needs of students, and With these show off people are paid very little. Disgrace. In fact, they earn 23.5 percent less than their colleagues in the private sector. The question I have is why a coach who has made crores out of the talents of young people, Why would he insult his colleagues just to curry favor with another politician?”

A national survey of US teachers conducted by the National Education Association (NEA) and released in February 2022 found that 55 percent of teachers were considering leaving the profession early due to COVID-19.

In addition, Tuberville was reviled by some in his own state in 2020 when he quit his job as Auburn University’s head football coach and still earned nearly $5 million, even though he broke his contract. Had given, AL.com reported.