As a high school administrator, I have to wonder what type of message we are sending to our youth. With the Eastern Airlines strike in full force, I have to question where our priorities are when we read about these “tyrannical wages” being paid to baggage handlers. Compare their income levels to those in the profession of educating the leaders of tomorrow. Furthermore, many of my colleagues place their life in jeopardy each day they enter the school grounds. What is more important, the care of our bags or the care of our youth?
Recently, I posed a question to my 11th grade history class: What occupation would you prefer, that of a high school teacher or an airline baggage handler?
Their overwhelming answer was to be a high school teacher. Then I explained to them that the average wage of a baggage handler is (without overtime and bonus) $44,000--$20,000 more than a teacher’s salary. The overwhelming response was which way to the airport?
Playa del Rey