The job market is tough right now. I can tell you from experience that finding a teaching job in certain markets is *really* hard right now since many districts are laying people off left and right.
Some teachers in Canada are resorting to extreme tactics to secure a position: They’re pretending to be Catholic:
“I don’t particularly like going (to mass) every Sunday, but if this is what I have to do, then I’ll do it,” said a Toronto-area woman, who didn’t want to be identified.
“I just really want to be in a career. I just want it so badly.”
The teacher said she has also been going to confession regularly and speaking with a priest on a weekly basis in order to receive the documents she needs to apply to the Toronto Catholic District School Board.
She is not Catholic. In fact, she doesn’t consider herself religious.
“I know what I believe in. I support abortion. I support gay marriage,” she added.
“I’m going through what I have to go through to get a job. I know it sounds bad.”
My favorite quotation has to be this one:
“I haven’t gone for my, um, what do you call it the bread thing yet… Communion. I’m nervous about it,” she added.
Ah yes, the bread thing…
Under the rules for the Toronto Catholic District School Board, all teaching personnel and others who work directly with children need to be Catholic.
It’s really incredible about Catholic schools. You have to adhere to the faith. (Or pretend to, anyway.) But it’s very telling to me that they don’t say “all teaching personnel… must be certified in the subject area in which they teach.” Because that’s not a necessity at many Catholic schools. It’s part of the reason I’m amazed some parents choose to send their kids to Catholic schools when there are perfectly decent public schools nearby.
As I read the article, I just keep thinking of how desperate for work some of these people have to be. At least where I’m from, Catholic school teachers at some schools make less than half of what a public school teacher makes. You don’t get the same benefits, either.
(Update: I’m told by commenters that in Ontario, Canada, Catholic schoolteachers make as much or more than their public school counterparts. The Catholic schools are also publicly funded and they actually receive more money per student than public schools. That’s pretty messed up…)
Here’s a random hypothetical for you: You’re an atheist teacher who can’t get a job in the public schools (for whatever reason). Would you take a job at a Catholic school if you had the opportunity?
(Thanks to Steve for the link!)