December 2018 SAT Essay Sample: "Teachers Shouldn't Teach for Free"

Home > SAT Test > SAT Essay > New SAT Essay Sample

December 2018 SAT Essay Sample: "Teachers Shouldn't Teach for Free"

Like doctors or lawyers, teachers also enjoy high reputations for their expert knowledge and great contributions. Unfortunately, they fail to obtain sufficient monetary rewards. In response to such imbalance, the author, Bryce Covert, in the passage "Teachers Shouldn't Teach for Free", starkly exposes the underpayment teachers have received and expresses his deep concerns about the education system. In order to suggest raising teachers' salaries, Mr. Covert makes full use of fact and data, manipulates logical reasoning and repeats emotional appeals throughout the passage.

The author systematically lays out the disclosure of underpayment in statistical and numerical form, showing readers how many different sources he consulted in writing the article, thereby establishing his credibility and authority. He starts off evidence with a series of facts that teachers agreed to keep teaching despite having insufficient compensations for their work. Those unpaid cases comes from several school districts, taking place in different periods,which effectively reminds readers of an urgency that underpayment is so prevalent that it imperils the education system in the long run. Then, the author locates the underpayment of teachers ranging from elementary school to high school. Specifically,"$53000", "$55000", "13 percent" and "30 percent", all these statistical evidence lends credence to the claim that teachers fail to get compensated for their high skills. Here Mr. Covert successfully specifies the increasing gap between teachers' dedication to their undertakings and slender wages they are finally earning. After hearing those visible data, readers, especially those who are oblivious of the unequal treatment teachers suffer from, would make close inspection. Readers keep tracing his credibility to the last part where the author claims that "Underpayment, in turns, weakens the education system."In order not to make an inflammatory statement, Mr. Covert cites data like "3133000teaching jobs" and "377000-person shortfall" to necessitate more teaching jobs.However, the underpaid positions will not appeal to more young graduates who are willing to serve as teachers. Therefore, it is conceivable that the scarcity of teaching staff fails to equip students with enough teaching resources. And readers would realize that inadequate payment impoverishes more than ordinary teachers, while the education system also suffers a lot.

The logos of Covert's argument is established in a systematic explanation why "teachers should not teach for free" and he creates a logical sequence for the readers to follow. For one thing, opposite sides are fully incorporated into his argument by means of concession and refutation. Those underpaid teachers' decisions to keep teaching is highly appreciated and recognized by the author, but he qualifies this practice as unbeneficial for both teachers and the education system. Indeed, Mr. Covert holds an objective attitude towards those teachers' motivation, although he does not advocate it any more. Meanwhile he admits that teachers' wages are not minimal, but undermining this seemingly decent salary by indicating that it does not match teachers' occupational skills, such as academic degrees, class and emotional management and knowledge instruction. It can be seen that the author tries to clarify what the meaning of underpayment is—incongruous compensation rather than exactly lower returns. Up to this section, readers tend to pose a question "can you show us a referent to prove the incongruous compensation?" In answer to this puzzle, Mr. Covert compares teachers with "workers with the same or similar credentials", drawing a conclusion that teachers earn less than those outside the profession. Further, he deepens the gap by comparing teachers with college professors, indicating that teachers tolerate the lower payment because "they do it out of passion and devotion".The deft use of contrast enables readers to realize teachers suffering from unfair treatment and responds appropriately to the claim that "the decision is not beneficial for Shelton and his fellow teachers."

Although his use of logos and ethos makes people comprehend the issue on an intellectual level, the emotional nature of this controversial subject produces a very natural pathos. First, the author cites words from John Shelton-- "We are dedicated to these children"—to express his admiration and appreciation for teachers. Although they cannot make sure whether they will get salaries on time, they decide to keep their normal instruction. Such emotional citation foreshadows the following concession—"The motivation is noble". What's more, it evokes readers' esteem and sympathy for teachers and readers in turn agree to the proposal—"Teachers shouldn't teach for free". In the middle, the reason why teachers are committed to their vocations is repeated twice, namely "motivated by love, not money". The author reiterates their selfless service without asking for anything in return. Readers' mood will follow such emotional appeals and tend to mull over the decision that we should raise the status of teaching.In the ending, Mr. Covert connects teachers' worth with curing the society, "from institutional racism to income inequality and lack of economic mobility" The importance of teaching is lifted up to the national level, which resonates with readers that teaching is so significant that their payment should be raised.

Through the effective use of rhetorical tools and the mindful arrangement of this essay, the author persuades the audience that the main idea.

More Information