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Letter: No 'automatic' raises for teachers

Classrooms across Long Island were empty on Thursday.

Classrooms across Long Island were empty on Thursday. Check our listings of delayed openings, closures and cancellations to see what's in store for Friday. Credit: Daniel Brennan

I am not complaining, but rather stating some facts ["Voter's remorse on a school budget," Opinion, June 8].

I am finishing my 22nd year as a teacher, and I adore my profession. I work with intelligent, creative, hardworking people, and I love the community where I teach -- students and parents alike.

However, here are some facts: In our last contract, we accepted a two-year freeze. No steps, no credit advancement, no raises. Why? The teachers union knew the community was facing some financial trouble, and we wanted to be a part of the solution. Did my taxes go up where I live? Yes. Did the cost of food, gas and oil go up? Yes. Did my children need new clothing, new sneakers and new sports equipment? Yes.

I know many people feel teachers receive automatic raises each year, but this is not always the case. Educators also feel for the losses in their schools: of sports teams, clubs and electives, to name a few. We know how important these experiences are to our students.

However, I have to disagree with the headline ". . . teacher step raises are a culprit." Most of us feel a strong connection to the district in which we teach, and I resent the statement that teachers are tied to taking opportunities away from the students.

Amy Rogan, Lynbrook