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Any Baltimore County public school teachers here?
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amother




OP


Post  Thu, Sep 19 2019, 2:55 pm
...who would be willing to post under their sn so I can pm them?

Thanks
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amother




Babypink


Post  Thu, Sep 19 2019, 6:09 pm
I work there as a clinician not teacher. You can ask me anything in this post.
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amother




OP


Post  Thu, Sep 19 2019, 10:02 pm
What is the health insurance like? How much do you have to pay, and how is the coverage? How about optical and dental plans?

Is it worthwhile financially? I'm in NY right now and if I moved to Baltimore, I'd be making $17K less than I make in NY. That's besides the fact that it looks like the health insurance there is not free. Does the difference in cost of living between NY and Baltimore make it worthwhile for me to still become a public school teacher there, despite the large discrepancy in salary?

What are the hours of a teacher? (In NYC, teachers work 34 hours and 10 minutes per week, split up differently.)

Is there at least a reasonable level of safety in those schools? I work across the street from the projects here, but it's generally safe during the day.
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amother




Babypink


Post  Thu, Sep 19 2019, 10:25 pm
Hi, actually you will find a lot of the information you asked for on the website. The teacher union is called TABCO. The salary scale, payment calendar, and I think even the health insurance is on the website

the insurance I have is Cigna. It is excellent coverage. Yes they take a small portion of your salary toward the premium but it is really a very very good plan. For a small family, you may pay a few hundred per month - like 250 to 450 but they pay another like 1000 per month. these numbers are made up but you get my point. I pay less than 3k per year for just me and my husband. The county pays probably 15-20k on our behalf.


It is a low paying county. insurance is great. safety and atmosphere depend on the school, do your research about specific schools before agreeing to an assignment. depending on the commute you are willing to do, you may choose another nearby county. City pays more but it is a tradeoff in some ways...


How else can I help?
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amother




Babypink


Post  Thu, Sep 19 2019, 10:31 pm
amother [ OP ] wrote:
What is the health insurance like? How much do you have to pay, and how is the coverage? How about optical and dental plans?

Is it worthwhile financially? I'm in NY right now and if I moved to Baltimore, I'd be making $17K less than I make in NY. That's besides the fact that it looks like the health insurance there is not free. Does the difference in cost of living between NY and Baltimore make it worthwhile for me to still become a public school teacher there, despite the large discrepancy in salary?

What are the hours of a teacher? (In NYC, teachers work 34 hours and 10 minutes per week, split up differently.)

Is there at least a reasonable level of safety in those schools? I work across the street from the projects here, but it's generally safe during the day.



officially you have to work 7 hours including unpaid half hour lunch, you get 50 minutes planning time. Unofficially a tremendous amount of work goes into teaching and some teachers have bus duties etc which make it hard to not leave late and come early.


optical plan is very cheap but may not offer too much...I dont know

dental plan exists but you have to see if worth it for you

why did you choose this county? for me, I chose it because the commute is great and I like the work. it is a very low paying county though

you may want to look into comparing nearby counties salaries and commute times. typically salary scales are public online

hope this helps.

What other questions do you have?
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amother




OP


Post  Thu, Sep 19 2019, 10:32 pm
You pay less than $3K per year for just yourself and your husband. I have 2 kids. This would be digging even more into a salary that's already very low for my skill set.

I have a bachelor's degree in a competitive field and I'm strongly considering a career change if I'd move to Baltimore.

I did look at the website but found the health insurance info somewhat confusing. I did look at the salary schedule and was amazed at how steep the pay difference is between NYC and Baltimore County.

I know that the city pays more, but aren't the public schools there insane? Like those are the ones that are right in the heart of everything that makes Baltimore City dangerous?
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amother




Babypink


Post  Thu, Sep 19 2019, 10:40 pm
amother [ OP ] wrote:
You pay less than $3K per year for just yourself and your husband. I have 2 kids. This would be digging even more into a salary that's already very low for my skill set.

I have a bachelor's degree in a competitive field and I'm strongly considering a career change if I'd move to Baltimore.

I did look at the website but found the health insurance info somewhat confusing. I did look at the salary schedule and was amazed at how steep the pay difference is between NYC and Baltimore County.

I know that the city pays more, but aren't the public schools there insane? Like those are the ones that are right in the heart of everything that makes Baltimore City dangerous?


You are right that the county is low paying. it may even be the lowest around here. keep in mind your cost of living in ny may be higher. I don't know. what is your degree and what are your options for career change?

they are pretty generous about paying for continuing education at least for my field (clinical work).

yes city has some schools that are in very bad neighborhoods, some may be a bit better, I personally have seen a bunch of their schools in my career so far - in previous contract jobs, and yes I agree with you though some are definitely better than others.
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amother




OP


Post  Fri, Sep 20 2019, 8:19 am
amother [ Babypink ] wrote:
You are right that the county is low paying. it may even be the lowest around here. keep in mind your cost of living in ny may be higher. I don't know. what is your degree and what are your options for career change?

they are pretty generous about paying for continuing education at least for my field (clinical work).

yes city has some schools that are in very bad neighborhoods, some may be a bit better, I personally have seen a bunch of their schools in my career so far - in previous contract jobs, and yes I agree with you though some are definitely better than others.


I know that the cost of living is higher here; I'm just wonder if the pay is proportionately lower, or if that $17K plus health insurance deductions is too big of a difference.

1000% outing myself by saying I have a bachelor's in math. But that's okay Smile

I have a master's plus 30 credits... I wonder if those 30 would even be accepted in Baltimore, since they're all Jewish studies credits through TTI Smile

How much does the city pay?
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amother




Seafoam


Post  Fri, Sep 20 2019, 8:29 am
It's a 7 hour day. Plus an hour long after school staff meeting on Mondays (depending on the school may not be every week but you are expected to be available to attend). They don't close for rosh hashana or yom kipper anymore and pesach depends on how easter/spring break falls. You get 2 days religious holiday leave, then need to use your personal business days (3 per year) and then leave without pay. You can't use sick days for this. They are pretty strict about it. No mid February break like NY.

Btw teachers don't get assigned a school. You interview with the county, then are put on a list for principals to call you for interviews. There are good and tough schools it's really a mix. Additionally some are close and some are a long drive so be aware early Fridays can be an issue depending on the school hours. Generally the middle and high schools have early start times so earlier dismissals. I don't know what grade level/area you'd be looking for.

City schools are mostly not great though a few are fine. You'd have to do research. Their central administration is a disaster and very disorganized and unhelpful.

Generally rent/housing is cheaper in Baltimore so you'd have to crunch numbers to see if it's worth it. Benefits--there are different plans so I can't really speak to your specific questions about that.
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amother




Babypink


Post  Fri, Sep 20 2019, 8:31 am
city maybe about 5k more per year? If you have MA plus 30 you are on a higher pay scale by about 2k though. the scale shows all of that. there is also ma+60, phd, etc.
As I said, have you thought about Howard County, Montgomery county? Anne Arundel county? and surrounding counties? contract companies pay more though I dont think they hire teachers just clinicians. about cost of living I have no clue, you need to know what your mortgage, tuition, etc. is. So I guess regarding that specific point I cant be helpful. But I can try to answer any county specific questions Smile
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amother




OP


Post  Fri, Sep 20 2019, 8:44 am
amother [ Seafoam ] wrote:
It's a 7 hour day. Plus an hour long after school staff meeting on Mondays (depending on the school may not be every week but you are expected to be available to attend). They don't close for rosh hashana or yom kipper anymore and pesach depends on how easter/spring break falls. You get 2 days religious holiday leave, then need to use your personal business days (3 per year) and then leave without pay. You can't use sick days for this. They are pretty strict about it. No mid February break like NY.

Btw teachers don't get assigned a school. You interview with the county, then are put on a list for principals to call you for interviews. There are good and tough schools it's really a mix. Additionally some are close and some are a long drive so be aware early Fridays can be an issue depending on the school hours. Generally the middle and high schools have early start times so earlier dismissals. I don't know what grade level/area you'd be looking for.

City schools are mostly not great though a few are fine. You'd have to do research. Their central administration is a disaster and very disorganized and unhelpful.

Generally rent/housing is cheaper in Baltimore so you'd have to crunch numbers to see if it's worth it. Benefits--there are different plans so I can't really speak to your specific questions about that.


Okay. Sounds like in the long run it's much more worthwhile for me to transition careers if we do end up moving to Baltimore. I could make much more for roughly the same amount of work.

My options include data analytics, computer programming, and anything in finance. All of those would involve taking a few online courses, and that's about it. My bachelor's in math is sufficient to get a job.

Just out of curiosity, how much do the frum schools in Baltimore pay for a teacher with a degree and 4-5 years of experience teaching high school math? I know it's going to be low, but I'm curious if it's worth my while if it means fewer hours. My DH can get a job with health insurance, so that's not necessarily my chief concern.
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amother




Seafoam


Post  Fri, Sep 20 2019, 9:06 am
Frum schools pay very little. I think it's standard to have a degree so you don't get paid more for that. But they'd love someone with your experience so you would easily get hired.
No idea how much but you can't rely on it to be more than a small side income
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amother




Aqua


Post  Fri, Sep 20 2019, 9:31 am
Frum school do pay VERY little, but tuition discounts for teachers in the same school should be taken into consideration when comparing. Bais Yaakov, for example, will give HS teachers a reduction even for a daughter in preschool. If your kids are girls and will be going to BY, that can make a big difference in your total cost of living.
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amother




Seafoam


Post  Fri, Sep 20 2019, 11:57 am
Another thing about Baltimore is the need for 2 cars. It is extremely difficult to manage with just one. Something else to keep in mind.
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amother




OP


Post  Fri, Sep 20 2019, 1:27 pm
amother [ Aqua ] wrote:
Frum school do pay VERY little, but tuition discounts for teachers in the same school should be taken into consideration when comparing. Bais Yaakov, for example, will give HS teachers a reduction even for a daughter in preschool. If your kids are girls and will be going to BY, that can make a big difference in your total cost of living.


That was part of my cheshbon.

I've heard this about some schools in NY, and I wonder if schools in Baltimore will do it, as well: a lot of teachers here have their paycheck sent straight to their boys' yeshiva to pay for tuition, pre-tax. I was wondering if this is legal and if Bais Yaakov or Bnos Yisroel would ever do such a thing.
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amother




OP


Post  Fri, Sep 20 2019, 1:28 pm
amother [ Seafoam ] wrote:
Another thing about Baltimore is the need for 2 cars. It is extremely difficult to manage with just one. Something else to keep in mind.


I'm aware of that, but I figure that's the case in most non-NYC (or even non-Brooklyn) communities. Am I wrong?
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amother




Seafoam


Post  Fri, Sep 20 2019, 3:38 pm
The paycheck to other schools thing is illegal I am pretty sure. And the Baltimore community as a whole is very careful about legality, the rabbanim are very straight etc. I doubt any of the schools will do that.
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mha3484




 
 
 


Post  Fri, Sep 20 2019, 3:39 pm
Using pretax income to pay tuition is called QTR is totally legal. Its a federal income tax benefit.
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amother




Seafoam


Post  Fri, Sep 20 2019, 3:42 pm
Yes but can the employer send the paycheck directly to the school? A relative used to be a government contract auditor and he was strongly outspoken about that when the topic came up.
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amother




OP


Post  Fri, Sep 20 2019, 4:23 pm
amother [ Seafoam ] wrote:
The paycheck to other schools thing is illegal I am pretty sure. And the Baltimore community as a whole is very careful about legality, the rabbanim are very straight etc. I doubt any of the schools will do that.


See mh3484 and amother's posts below yours.

This is why I asked the question. I've heard the whole debate. I'd probably end up calling an accountant in Baltimore to find out, but I wanted to know if there is anyone who researched this topic. Is it legal, and if so, what are the parameters of legality?
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