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Democratic mayors challenge teachers unions in urban political shift
The Washington Post ^ | March 30, 2012 | Lyndsey Layton with Peyton Craighill

Posted on 03/31/2012 4:49:48 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife

...The mayors want a raft of changes. They want to replace the uniform pay scale with merit pay. They seek to expand public charter schools, which are largely non-union. Some want to lengthen school days, requiring teachers to work more hours.

And nearly all of these mayors have set their sights on the one workplace protection that teachers have held central for more than 100 years: tenure.

The unions say many of the “fixes” embraced by the mayors are trendy ideas without evidence that they help children learn. Instead, they allow politicians to appear as if they are making improvements without having to confront the profound problems of urban schools, labor leaders say.

“We don’t want to have honest conversations about poverty and segregation and race and class, all those other sorts of ills,” said Karen Lewis, president of the Chicago Teachers Union. “Those are really tough issues. So this gives them an excuse to focus on something else.”

Her union fought Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s effort to add 90 minutes to the school day in Chicago, which has the shortest school day of any major city. Emanuel, the former chief of staff to President Obama, got the Illinois legislature to pass a law that will allow him to impose a longer school day starting in September. It also makes it harder for the union to strike, among other things.

On the national level, teachers unions have started to recalibrate, looking for ways to work in partnership with politicians.....

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Business/Economy; Front Page News; Government; Politics/Elections; US: Illinois
KEYWORDS: 2012election; chicago; education; illinois; rahmemanuel; singlepartystate; teacherunions
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1 posted on 03/31/2012 4:49:50 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Excellent read. Thank you.

2 posted on 03/31/2012 5:06:45 AM PDT by wiggen (The teacher card. When the racism card just won't work.)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Oh, you mean they want to do what Wisconsin governor Scott Walker did, huh?

3 posted on 03/31/2012 5:13:40 AM PDT by Obadiah
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Great post!

The left eating it’s own again.

4 posted on 03/31/2012 5:14:08 AM PDT by <1/1,000,000th%
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To: wiggen

LIBERALS are watching as millions upon millions flee urban public schools in disgust.

To take this position (make the effort to appear concerned) shows the NEA-AFT (Democrat money and muscle) and the Democrat Party are hemorrhaging supporters and votes.

5 posted on 03/31/2012 5:14:44 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

I know. At long last they are resorting to eating their own.
Pass the ketchup.

6 posted on 03/31/2012 5:42:29 AM PDT by wiggen (The teacher card. When the racism card just won't work.)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

The “public school” is BY FAR, the largest, most expensive, most subversive, and most destructive entitlement program in the country.

The “public school” is better understood as the “government school collective”.

It is silly to imagine that you can fix the public schools, because the very concept itself is communist.

Any child that comes out of the government school collective with their moral compass and common sense intact does so in spite of the government school indoctrination, not because of it.

If you want to win the culture war, have lots of children (see my tagline) and homeschool them or form your own school cooperative with your church or synagogue and like-minded friends and relatives.

Nobody loves your children more than you do.

Nobody can teach your children like you can.

Your children would love nothing better than to be taught by you, if you start doing so before they are corrupted by the government school collective.

It is hypocritical for you to submit your children to an authority with whom you fundamentally disagree. And your children will know it.

If you have children, make whatever sacrifices you must to get them out of the public schools.


Especially not with your own children.

7 posted on 03/31/2012 5:44:26 AM PDT by Westbrook (Children do not divide your love, they multiply it.)
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To: Westbrook; All

“We must envision a 21st century system of lifetime learning more flexible, more productive, more individualized and more capable than any bureaucracy could achieve.” – Newt Gingrich

The Gingrich Education Plan:

The continued growth of American jobs and American prosperity in a knowledge-based, internet-connected, globally-competitive world will be determined by quality of America’s schools. If America is going to remain competitive with China and India in the 21st century, then we must commit to improving education, especially in math and science, and moving from a bureaucrat-dominated status quo to an innovative system that emphasizes accountability, transparency, and parental choice:

* Empower parents to pick the right school for their child. Parents had the right to choose the school that is best for their child, and should never be trapped in a failing school against their will.
* Institute a Pell Grant-style system for Kindergarten through 12th Grade. Per-pupil school district funding should go into each child’s backpack, and follow them to the school their parents wish to attend. Parents who home school their children should receive a tax credit or be allowed to keep the Pell Grant.
* Require transparency and accountability about achievement. Each state must set a rigorous standard that allows every student everywhere to master the skills they will need to be competitive, and develop a process for grading the effectiveness of every school.
* Implement a “no limits” charter system.
o All of the money allocated for student education goes directly to the school.
o The school manages its own staff, whereby it is exempt from laws regarding tenure, and need not unionize.
o The school defines its own curriculum, in line with the state standards and assessments. Students in charters are not exempt from state assessments. The schools are not exempt from reporting requirements, nor should they be.
o State law allows the school to “franchise” its model without limitation. That means they need not apply for a new school every time they can build a new one. If they have the demand, they must be able to serve it.
o The state has NO CAPS on the number of charter schools that can be approved, and the process for approving charter schools is smooth and efficient.
* Establish a pay for performance system. States and school governing boards should lift all existing prohibitions that prevent a principal from evaluating teachers based in part on student achievement.
* Welcome business talent in our communities into the classroom. Every state should open their systems up to part-time teachers so that retired physicists, neighborhood pharmacists, or local accountants could teach one or two hours a day and bring knowledge to the classroom, and business-like adult expectations to the students. And programs like Teach For America should be encouraged and not limited.
* Restore American history and values into the classroom. America is a learned civilization and every American, including immigrants, should learn American history and the principles of American self-government, productivity and prosperity. As Thomas Jefferson wrote in 1820: “If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be.” Every student must learn to read and much of what they read should reinforce American civilization.
* Protect the rights of home-schooled children by ensuring they have the same access to taxpayer funded, extra-curricular educational opportunities as any public school student.
* Encourage states to think outside outdated boundaries of education. States have developed very innovative models:
o Students who graduate early should get the cost of the years they skip as an automatic scholarship, following the model of Governor Daniels’s program in Indiana.
o Every state should have a work-study college that enables students to graduate debt free, following the model of the College of the Ozarks in Missouri.
o Individualized, 24/7 learning should be universally available online, with the Florida Virtual School (over 120,000 students for K-12) as a model.
* Shrink the federal Department of Education and return power to states and communities. The Department’s only role will be to collect research and data, and help find new and innovative approaches to then be adopted voluntarily at the local level.

8 posted on 03/31/2012 5:55:06 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

It’s still a collectivist statist model.

Not acceptable.

See The Alliance for the Separation of School and State here ...
... for more elucidation on this subject.

9 posted on 03/31/2012 5:58:27 AM PDT by Westbrook (Children do not divide your love, they multiply it.)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
"In the clash over what is best for children, adults on both sides are gambling."

It is not and never has been about 'the children'.

10 posted on 03/31/2012 6:13:23 AM PDT by DUMBGRUNT (The best is the enemy of the good!)
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To: Obadiah
"Oh, you mean they want to do what Wisconsin governor Scott Walker did, huh?"

An Obama appointed federal judge just ruled against Act 10, Walker's anti-collective bargaining bill. Two other judges threw out the voter ID bill. Republican Governors have no power according to the liberal judicial system.

11 posted on 03/31/2012 6:29:48 AM PDT by gorush (History repeats itself because human nature is static)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

OPM (other peoples’ money) is in short supply and the union coffers have been drained. The dumbass teachers won’t realize they have no further value until they have screwed up the thinking of another generation. The left is counting on that being enough to get past the tipping point.

12 posted on 03/31/2012 6:29:48 AM PDT by Steamburg (The contents of your wallet is the only language Politicians understand.)
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To: AdmSmith; AnonymousConservative; Berosus; bigheadfred; Bockscar; ColdOne; Convert from ECUSA; ...

1) that’s one peril of the single party state

2) that’s one peril of the Party of the Single Party State

3) that’s a teaching moment about giving decades of unquestioning support to the Party of the Single Party State

4) that’s one way of shifting 90 minutes of law enforcement activity back into Chicago schools (make that “schools”) where it belongs

5) Raum Emanuel, non-resident mayor of Chicago, tells the Illinois state legislature to do its job for a change, and they do

Thanks Cincinatus’ Wife.

13 posted on 03/31/2012 7:42:34 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

When the Democrats turn on the unions, you know just how broke we are.

14 posted on 03/31/2012 7:51:41 AM PDT by BfloGuy (The final outcome of the credit expansion is general impoverishment.)
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To: SunkenCiv

I live near Chicago, so I know that Illinois isn’t a single party state. One of Illinois’ U.S. senators is a Republican, and the majority of U.S. reps., from Illinois, are Republicans. However, Cook Co. & Chicago are mostly Democrats. The last time that Chicago elected a republican mayor was 1927. In 1995, the republican candidate for mayor received 3% of the vote. After that, the mayoral election became nonpartisan.

I hope that Chicago will elect school board members. The elections would be nonpartisan, and a some Republicans would win, partly because the voters won’t know that those candidates are Republicans.

15 posted on 03/31/2012 8:30:33 AM PDT by PhilCollins
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

I think it is more of an issue that the money sucked up by the schools is being taken from elsewhere; here in NJ they laid off a lot of cops because there simply wasn’t any more money. We have a property tax cap in place that limits how much they can increase each year; it they’re capped at 2%, and the teachers get 4% raises, other people lose thei jobs. It is turning into a real dump here, as street go to crap, stop signs are blocked by foliage, etc.

16 posted on 03/31/2012 9:09:52 AM PDT by kearnyirish2
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To: PhilCollins

Okay, Single Party City-State then. ;’)

17 posted on 03/31/2012 11:47:15 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
Jackson, who intends to seek a new school tax in November. “The only way we can get a levy is to demonstrate to people that they will be paying for something that’s different.”

About ten years ago the voters of Cleveland were offered a desperation proposal. Pass a levy that would raise a cool billion dollars, and the infusion of money would set the school system upright and on the way. Fix dilapidated schools, tear down obsolete ones, build new ones, etc etc. The voters of Cleveland took a deep breath and approved it. Nothing changed. The money is gone. And the children are still getting crap education.

Democrat (of course) Frank Jackson is a brave man, and he has republican Kasich in his corner.

BTW, thanks to their repealing SB 5, the union thugs of Lorain County next door are watching 180 layoffs, about half of them teachers, take the guts out of their bankrupt school system.

18 posted on 03/31/2012 12:12:27 PM PDT by hinckley buzzard
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

and the RATS, take another one in the.........HA ha!!!

19 posted on 03/31/2012 12:20:05 PM PDT by Chode (American Hedonist - *DTOM* -ww- NO Pity for the LAZY)
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To: hinckley buzzard

Here in NJ a lot of new teachers were laid off, and a lot of prospective public-school teachers never got their first job out of college, because of the funds directed towards established tenured teachers. They constantly suck more money from the taxpayers, and the property tax cap ended the annual ritual of watching our taxes go up $500+ annually, so the “newbies” and “wanna-bes” were out of luck.

I have no sympathy for them; I’m glad they failed in their attempted rape of the NJ taxpayers.

20 posted on 03/31/2012 1:24:16 PM PDT by kearnyirish2
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