When I became a teacher over a decade ago, teachers were guaranteed step advancements, cost of living increases, raises, class size limits and if they did their job well, job security. There wasn't a 3% contribution to the FRS, or punitive VAM evaluations, and testing was something we did for a week towards the end of the year, not the end all be all of education that it has become. Things have really changed, well except for Florida's teachers being some of the poorest paid in the nation that has been pretty consistent.
Perhaps the biggest change however is how Florida views its teachers. They used to be respected and sometimes revered members of the community. Now more often than not they are ridiculed for being members of a union, which as you can see from above isn’t the bogey man ramming demands through and blamed for not being able to single handily overcome the debilitating effects of poverty. Teachers have become the scapegoats of politicians and business interests who are seeking to privatize and profit off of education and a community that has allowed it to happen.
If people truly care about education and want to see it improve, then they have to stop letting Tallahassee injure the teaching profession, we can’t marginalize, blame, and run teachers out to improvement.
Above is based upon a face book rift that several teachers are doing.