Last week I got a postcard in the mail touting a program my insurance company, I mean Health Plan, offers. There's some sort of rewards program that I can opt into earning points towards gift cards and other discounts if I register and then log my healthy choices. I went on line and registered already imagining how I would spend my "money" buying more running clothes. After I selected my user name and password, I prepared to begin logging all those runs and sculpting classes. Except...my brand new login and password didn't work. Hmmm. So I requested a new one. Which also didn't work. At this point, the process was proving to be more detrimental than beneficial to my health so I abandoned the task, for now.
Two days later I received a letter from CDPHP thanking me for enrolling in the program. Or, to be accurate, I received THREE identical letters all dated 2/9/12 saying exactly the same thing. Really??? I couldn't help but recall that each time my union made concessions to the contract we had agreed to, I watched my health insurance premiums continue to increase. I understand that companies are people and all, but why aren't these businesses being asked to toe the fiscal line? Is the company that is sending out an identical letter 3 times to me doing more effective, important work than the professionals teaching our children? I don't mind doing my part and I'm a practical person. I get it. My problem is that I'm sick of having to justify my existence professionally annually. As if being a librarian didn't already come with its own lack of educational street cred.
The governor has demanded a change to teacher evaluations and I'm now supposed to be rated on the same rubric as a classroom teacher. Which means that 40% of my annual performance should be based upon standardized tests. Thinking back on your time as a student (or what you have observed) do you recall taking any exams or filling in bubble sheets in the LMC? How about during your time in the guidance office or while in P.E.? Exactly.
From what I understand, folks are upset about the benefits teachers now possess, things like our "part time" status, excessive retirements and practically free insurance premiums. For the record, I didn't ask to discontinue contributing a mandatory percentage of my salary to my retirement. That decision was made by someone else, probably a financial expert. And, incidentally, I opened a 403B immediately after becoming "vested," to continue saving for my retirement, because I'm not, nor have I ever, asked for something for nothing.
I've invested - in my education, my profession and my future. Guess I'll just continue making healthy choices for myself and not count on my health insurance plan or my government to reward me for my efforts.