Let’s Play Would You Rather… Employment Edition.

After reading this dataset I think we all were nagged with the question “Should I become a Boston Police Lieutenant..?” or maybe that was just me… Either way, I was gobsmacked right in the face when I read they make $129,530.83! While I do understand they have earned their stripes and all that jazz I was still saddened to see that those teaching our children that might very well grow up to be those men in blue were making less. However, I do think to compare the two is irresponsible of me because while one educates our youth, the other (depending on who you ask, of course) terminates the possibility of criminal activity in addition to other tasks like supervising patrol sergeants, police officers, and detectives who carry out crime suppression and investigative tasks. But then I saw that special education teachers make significantly less as well and that is a very big problem to me. All children deserve top-notch education and those trying to teach them to deserve to be paid for their services. Teaching children especially children with special needs is extremely difficult.

When I was young I was diagnosed with Dyslexia and Attention deficit disorder and was put in a special school named Curry Ingram Academy where I could get targeted help because school systems inadvertently have children fall between the cracks for the sake of moving the class along and my parents did not want that to happen (blessed). I was by far the easiest child to teach and I was not an easy child by any stretch of the imagination I’ll tell you that right now. It was there that I saw how many severe learning disorders there are in the world and how patience really is an activity one must practice every day. To think that teachers of special needs children are not being paid what they deserve sickens me. Not only is it emotionally grueling on teachers (special needs children or children deemed as “normal”) but also teaching is dangerous. No, I’m not talking saying this because of the rising school shootings but because students can be dangerous. We forget that and the world we live in allows us to.

Teachers and police officers are necessary in the world we live in today. One could argue that teachers are more so to some degree because they are the ones who can better mold someone into becoming someone that is not a criminal. That’s alot of responsibility for just one person to carry and should be recognized by our system as such. Some days police officers only hand out parking tickets. They are not coming face to face with a gun every day like many people expect. Meanwhile, teachers have become accustomed to learning that they might have to encounter them not because they sought it but because they work at a school. It is hard to understand why those shaping the youth (thus preventing possible crime) come in contact with many of the same issues cops come into contact with (drugs, guns, outbursts, etc) and are paid less when one of those two didn’t sign up to risk their lives every day and the other did.

  • Who collects this data set? If it’s an organization, which department of the organization? Is there a specific person listed who you could contact?
    • City of Boston
    • Contact point: Department of Innovation and Technology
    • Email: analyticsteam@boston.gov
  • Why do you think the organization collects this data? Does it specify how it uses the data?
    • It collects this data so employees can see the budget, employment, finances and operations in Boston.
  • What time period does the data set cover?
    • It covers 2011-2019 and was modified in 2020.
  • What are some questions you have about this data set? (Note: they can be basic like “why is this data being collected?” or very specific like “what does the field BUS_LIC_STATUS mean?”)
    • Why is the data centered on police departments and schools?
  • Who are three types of people you could interview about this data set in order to learn more?
    • Someone from Open Data Commons Public Domain Dedication and License (PDDL), the Department of Innovation and Technology, a teacher, or a cop.

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