With Wisconsin Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s budget plans up in the air, teachers and the unions that represent them are telling whoever will listen that his proposed budget cuts would devastate them.
The Daily Caller started reporting the salaries and benefits of teachers who went public with their complaints on Monday, and this story will contain more of them.
Politico reported that Michael Mulvey, a high school algebra teacher in Wauwatosa, Walker’s hometown, held a sign that read: “Scott, I taught your son algebra. My son just turned 5. Does he deserve a good education?”
Mulvey makes $46,687 in base salary and $25,481 in “fringe benefits,” which include health insurance, life insurance and retirement pay.
Politico also reported that a high school math teacher from Green Bay, Karen Hill, traveled to Madison on a bus full of fellow teachers to protests, and held a sign that read, “negotiate not dictate.”
Hill makes $59,695 in base salary with an additional $28,398 in benefits.
Martha Vasquez, an art teacher in Madison, told Politico that she was irked more at former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin chiming into the debate than she was at Walker.
“I was really surprised when Sarah Palin weighted in,” Vasquez said. “This bill is ripping apart the of what it means to be a Wisconsinite. We value education.”
Vasquez makes $50,018 in base salary and $11,188 in benefits.
Kevin Yeske, the assistant principal of Lincoln High School in Wisconsin Rapids, allowed students 20 minutes of one of their school days to protest Walker’s budget, and provided two school staffers to supervise the protest.
“I was really impressed with our students,” Yeske told the Wisconsin Rapids Tribune. “They wanted to make a statement, but we want to make sure we don’t do any damage or consequences (to the school day); it was very well done.”
Yeske makes $94,262 in base salary with an additional $35,076 in benefits.
Henri Kinson, a former school board member in Whitewater, Wisc., told TheDC teachers receive five years of full health insurance after they retire, as long they worked for at least 10 years in the state. Kinson said that costs about $100,000 per teacher, funding he said comes from local school boards’ classroom and educational materials budgets – and could be used for more textbooks, technology for students and other learning materials.
Kinson also said that the approximately $100,000 per teacher post-retirement health insurance plans don’t show up in the database of school employees’ salaries and benefits because when the teachers get them, they’re not employees anymore.
11:52 a.m. – Bert Zipperer, a Madison middle school guidance counselor, said Walker is “power drunk” and that he and fellow teachers are going to “sober him up.”
Zipperer makes $62, 062 in base salary with an additional $26,847 in benefits.
12:06 p.m. – Teacher Leah Gustafson held a sign in Madison that read: “Scott, your son is in my class. I teach him, I protect him, I inspire him.”
Gustafson makes $40,921 in base salary with $16,325 in benefits.
1:27 p.m. – Julie Fitzpatrick, a first-grade teacher at Elvehjem Elementary School in Madison, told the Wisconsin State Journal with teary eyes that this bill is about “so much more than teachers,” and she was glad to have her students’ parents’ support while she protested at the capitol all last week. She is back teaching as of Tuesday morning.
Fitzpatrick makes $64,569 in base salary and $27,637 in benefits.
The average Wisconsin worker in 2009 made $37,398, per the Department of Commerce. Also, teachers are out of the classroom for 13 or 14 weeks of the year, according to the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.
The source for this Wisconsin teacher salary and benefits data is a database on the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel website that references data from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.