It’s about time! Tenure for public school teachers is a racket – supported wholeheartedly by teachers unions – to keep marginal and lousy teachers on the job. The job, by the way, is promoting every kid. Let no child be left behind, even if they can’t read.
It’s no secret that there’s no love lost between The Curmudgeon and unionized public school teachers. We respect the job of a teacher, we just don’t respect the people who abuse that title, like the public school teachers in Chicago or New York City, who are graduating kids from high school who read at a sixth grade level, or who require remedial math and reading to get into community college.
This is going to be an all out war, and the battle lines are drawn. Here’s Michelle Rhee, who tried to improve the schools in the District of Columbia.
Here’s the bottom line for the decision, and the reason why this decision is so important.
Ruling in a case brought by nine California students, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Rolf Treu said the current system discriminates against minority and low-income students in K-12 classrooms, saying there was “no dispute that there are a significant number of grossly ineffective teachers currently active in California classrooms.”
He agreed with the students’ claims that California tenure laws result in ineffective teachers “obtaining and retaining permanent employment” in schools that predominantly serve low-income and minority students.
The lawsuit asked the courts to strike down several laws providing teachers with tenure, seniority-based job protection and other benefits. During the trial, Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent John Deasy testified that it can take more than two years on average to fire an incompetent tenured teacher and sometimes as long as 10. The cost of doing so, he said, can run anywhere from $250,000 to $450,000.
Needless to say, the unions are apoplectic.
Randi Weingarten, head of the American Federation of Teachers, said the case pits students’ needs against teachers’. “This is a sad day for public education,” she said.
Please remember that comment the next time you hear a teachers union representative squalling about how their demands are “for the children.”
We take a quick pause to celebrate, but the battle’s no over, it’s just begun. The usual suspects are lining up with federal dollars and claiming a federal mandate to “fix education.”
The ruling was hailed by the nation’s top education chief as bringing to California — and possibly the nation — an opportunity to build “a new framework for the teaching profession.” The decision represented “a mandate” to fix a broken teaching system, U.S. Education Secretary [and former Chicago Schools Superintendent]Arne Duncan said.
Here’s hoping Arnie and his ilk – are you listening Bill & Melinda Gates – are stopped cold. We’re fans of heads on a pike at the city gates for people like this. Schools need to be reclaimed by parents and local communities, not run by the same people who run the schools in Washington DC and Chicago.
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