In 1928, a young man, in order to pay his tuition at Southwest Texas State College, took a teaching job at Welhausen School in Cotulla, a small town near the Mexican border.
His students were children of Mexican-American farmers. He didn’t speak Spanish and many of them didn’t speak English. But that didn’t stop him. He encouraged them by holding speech and debate tournaments and organizing field trips to neighboring towns where they competed in speech and spelling contests.
With his first paycheck, he bought playground equipment. He wrote to his mother asking her to send toothpaste for the children. His strict but caring nature left a lasting impression on his students and fellow teachers.
His name was Lyndon Johnson. His first job in politics was as a lobbyist for the Houston Teachers Association. “I went to Austin before the state legislature trying to get a tax on cigarettes to go into teachers’ salaries,” he recalled. “We must constantly be moving them up so that they can live in dignity.”
When he became our 36th President, he passed the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, launched Project Head Start and supported programs for bilingual education, nutrition and Federal aid to elementary schools.
So, if you’re considering a second career after retiring from public education, think about running for President of the United States. It pays around $400,000/year and the benefits are excellent. In the meantime, be sure to take advantage of all the benefits and discounts available through your association and AMBA. Your membership may entitle you to a free benefits review. AMBA’s skilled agents can help you stretch your retirement dollars or fill in gaps in your health coverage. Learn more online or call 866-979-0497.
And, after your Presidential term is over, you can always return to teaching. As LBJ said, “When I leave this job, I want to go back to right where I started.”