Lindbergh board doesn’t need committee to study salaries, letter writer says

To the editor:

The Lindbergh Board of Education doesn’t need another committee to “compare” district salaries.

The whole public school system is a “one-for-all” pay schedule — same union, same rules, same contract terms — all under one roof. Districts with average-income residents could not match Kirkwood or Clayton or Ladue teacher wages without taxing at much higher rates. “Duh” fact? Homes don’t pay taxes — incomes pay taxes.

Comparing wages to adjacent districts is foolish and is like comparing an apple to the same apple upside down.

Teacher salaries are what you are comparing. So use the whole universe of teachers in all accredited Missouri schools.

Public schools do not own the profession of teacher. Lutheran, Catholic and trade schools all have comparable excellent K-8 teachers for comparison of wage structure.

Is that asking too much? Maybe the committee would see just how “expensive” the lowest-paid public school K-8 teachers appear when compared to non-public school teachers. For example, no age 60 retirement costs, no after-retirement cost-of-living adjustment, no per-teacher extra $10,000 annual pension costs.

Lindbergh can save millions if it compares apples to apples — teachers to teachers.

Do your study, but do it right. Demanding that all union teachers join America’s universal Social Security retirement system would save millions of dollars.

District residents deserve a real “teacher” study, not a false show effort.

Finally, I would ask the board to justify Superintendent Jim Simpson’s $250,000 salary, compared to St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay’s $150,000 salary or Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon’s $135,000 salary.