For some time now, many Allentown teachers have appeared before this board to express their concern for Art, Music and Physical education in the ASD and their commitment to its importance as a core subject for learning and intellectual growth. Being on education’s front line they are the experts on what motivates learning. Likewise, they see first hand the detrimental effects of cuts in Arts, Music and Physical education. However, they also have the power to rescue these at the elementary level for the children of the Allentown School District by simply agreeing to extend the pay freeze. In the face of dire economic circumstances/times, the taxpayers will be doing their part to balance this budget. They will be directed by this board to makea sacrifice, their tax bill will go up, and more money will be taken out of their pockets. If ASD teachers would make a similar sacrifice, Arts, Music and Physical education could be continued in the district’s elementary schools. If the teachers wanted to save more positions then they could consider a small salary decrease. The amount of salary reduction necessary to save positions could be quickly calculated by the district. The teachers are not powerless in this budgetary crisis. They could choose to do the right thing for the district’s students and their fellow teachers facing furlough. They can provide an example of selflessness and demonstrate their commitment to public education.
UPDATE: The Teachers Response