At the Utah Taxpayer’s Association Pre-Legislative Session Conference Monday morning, Judi Clark with Parents for Choice in Education said that teachers in Nebo School District get 120 days of paid vacation per year. That number seemed a little high to me, so I decided to test this theory with a little bit of math:
There are 365 days in a year. However, Americans are paid based on a five-day work week, and we have established Monday through Friday as the work week. There are 52 weeks in a year, each containing one Saturday and one Sunday. In other words, there are 104 “weekend days” a year.
365-104=261 “working” days for most Americans.
In the state of Utah, we require students to be enrolled in school 180 days a year. 261 working days minus the 180 school days leaves us with 81 days. Which means that for teachers to have “120 paid vacation days” a year, they would have to miss 39 days of school a year, or roughly one classroom day a week. It’s been a while since I was in school, but I doubt kids have a substitute once a week.
And I didn’t include the numerous days that teachers are required by contract to spend at school without students, or mandatory continuing education, or lesson planning, or any other time teachers spend away from school.
If PCE is going to throw out numbers, they had better make sure that the math makes sense. Otherwise, it tarnishes their entire argument.