The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA


August 20, 2013

Readers' Forum 9-20 | Equal pay is simply right thing to do

JOHNSTOWN — Congratulations to each of the teachers involved in the litigation case for earned back pay in the Windber Area School District. It is great to see an obvious injustice addressed and hopefully corrected.

I understand that unequal pay has been ongoing through several administrations at Windber, which isn’t surprising, and continued by the current administration, which is even less surprising.

I’m certain that the hiring process for teachers is a complicated one, much like the three-step process when action is taken against the school. However, I’m fairly sure that paying teachers the same, regardless of sex, should be a common-sense “step” considered in the process, first and foremost because it’s simply the right thing to do, and also it tends to help avoid the incredibly negative publicity associated with such a lawsuit.

Many other school districts that aren’t concerned with cutting corners hire female teachers fairly all the time. Perhaps the current administration, in its continued pursuit of perfection, should consider consulting school districts that do things the right way.

No worries though, all can rest easy that several articles about Pennsylvania System of School Assessment test scores will magically appear in the local newspapers and Rambler magazine, bragging about the high scores that were enabled, ironically, by many teachers who have been unfairly paid for years.

John J. Curlej


Former Windber student and substitute

Drop the act and get back to work, Betta

In order to protect the truth, I tried Somerset County Commissioner Joe Betta’s idea of wearing a sign around my neck saying “You’re being taped.” 

My wife took a look at my cassette recorder and praised me for my vow of celibacy, which she intended to enforce. My boss was a little more practical and gave me a few more assignments to keep me out of his office. All of a sudden, my beer buddies got busy on their honey-do lists. My kids unexpectedly started talking in my presence, recounting every stupid thing I had done in the past 10 years.

So here I am speaking the truth to myself; and as I should have realized, no one was listening to me for a reason. My advice to Commissioner Betta is to drop his vow of celibacy and get back to work.

Malcolm Crittenden


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