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Forget Hockey Players, These Are My Children's True Heroes

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The NHL lockout boils down to the players believing they are not being paid enough money to play the sport they have given blood, sweat, and tears. I understand the countless hours they have put on the ice and the financial setbacks their parents have sacrificed. There is no doubt in my mind hockey is an elitist sport and it costs a lot of money to be the best on the ice.

My children look-up to these players - they are inspired by Hull and cheer on Eberle. But at the same time, for a family of four to watch their heroes on the ice, it costs over $200 in tickets for one game to sit in the nosebleeds. You keep your fingers-crossed that they will play a winning game!

It is after the hockey games are over the next day my children return to school and are welcomed by a tremendous support staff. The administrative workers that help to coordinate field trips, hot lunches, bus times, and calls home to let you know your child is sick. The teacher assistants who spend hours in the classroom working with the children that need that extra help and supporting the teacher who has their handful with large classroom sizes. It is this support staff without their efforts which the school would be ill-equipped to run.

As the front line of Alberta's Catholic schools remain on strike requesting the province to increase their salaries. It is a startling contrast that the average wage of a teacher assistant is $17.69 per hour and the average income of an NHL hockey player is $2.45 million per year.

The support staff at my childrens' school are the people they know and see each day that make their school great. So, regarding the hockey lockout: when you ask if I feel sorry for the hockey player that makes an average salary of $2.45 million and that my children watch play once a year? Not a chance!

The Oilers might be my childrens' heroes, but hockey players do nothing for their education, at the end of the day. The true heroes are the school administrators, the TA's, and teachers who put in the time to give my children the best education. It is these people who are caught in the politics of being everything to everyone and not getting paid an extra cent for it.