Should teachers be paid for after-school instruction?'s Teacher Poll of the Week
Should teachers be paid for after-school instruction?

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A staggering percentage of people taking part in this poll believe that teachers should be paid for after-school instruction. Teachers already spend many hours after school doing prep work and grading papers without participating in lessons after regular classroom hours in addition.

Teacher's contracts are not universal but are negotiated by state or region with local teacher representatives. The details of each contract determine what jobs or tasks are part of the regular salary assessment. Additional pay may be allotted to teachers for extra duties as per their contract but salaried employees do not receive compensation on an hourly basis, thus are usually exempt from receiving overtime pay. Working outside of regular classroom hours is something that most teacher contracts do not account for.

Despite the fact that after school hours are not usually counted as part of the salaried job, many teachers spend hours at home or school either before or after classroom time to complete work. Teachers also volunteer their time in various ways. Some coach school teams, others participate in fundraising activities, and others organize and supervise different clubs. Without teachers, the students would miss out on much more than lessons.

If teachers were to receive pay for after-school instruction, how would fair compensation be decided? Would teachers receive pay hourly or per student, or would it be based on student understanding? It's an interesting concept to have teachers compensated by the level of student comprehension. It would certainly lead to unique approaches to lesson planning for those students that are having difficulty understanding lessons presented in the usual fashion. It wouldn't be a fair way to decide after school payment, but it would certainly be interesting.

Teachers sometimes have a difficult job covering the necessary curriculum in any given year. Increased class sizes make this more evident as teachers try to impart knowledge to a larger and larger group of students. Sometimes the only way to help those students struggling to keep up is to offer help during lunch hour or after school. If this trend continues to grow, contract negotiators will have to take these hours into consideration when determining fair compensation packages.