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Many Democrats Prioritizing Black Families Over Teachers Unions
Townhall.com ^ | June 16, 2014 | Cathy Reisenwitz

Posted on 06/16/2014 4:22:01 AM PDT by Kaslin

Five teacher hiring and firing laws bit the dust in California this week. In a major blow to teachers unions, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Rolf M. Treu’s ruling struck down teacher tenure, while freeing districts from spending hundreds of thousands to fire teachers and from having to fire newly-hired teachers first during layoffs.

The ruling is being applauded as a major civil rights victory, with Judge Treu comparing it with historic desegregation battle Brown v. Board of Education. Treu said both cases addressed “a student’s fundamental right to equality of the educational experience.” The data could not be clearer that the union-controlled public education monopoly disproportionately harms black and Latino students. But legal pushback on the issue puts the Democratic party in a tight spot. Party leaders can continue ignoring or thwarting reform efforts aimed at ensuring every child has access to a quality education. Or, they can jump on board the fight for equality, and alienate the teachers unions, historically among their most powerful allies. More and more Democrats are choosing the latter, putting them on the right side of history, but the wrong side of a very powerful lobby.

In his ruling Judge Treu described the evidence that California’s teacher hiring and firing laws harm poor and minority students “compelling.”

“Indeed, it shocks the conscience,” Treu wrote. At the trial, experts testified that teacher tenure laws, along with “first in, last out” protections for senior educators keep bad teachers in their jobs. And, unsurprisingly, districts usually place failing teachers in predominantly black and Hispanic schools. California’s black students are 43 percent more likely than whites to be taught by a failing teacher. Latino students are 68 percent more likely. Judge Treu ruled that this situation violates those students’ constitutional right to an equal education.

Getting stuck with even one bad teacher has devastating consequences going forward. Harvard Prof. Thomas Kane testified at the trial. He pointed out that a student assigned to a grossly ineffective math teacher loses nearly a full year of learning per year compared to a student assigned to a teacher of average effectiveness. Harvard Prof. Raj Chetty testified as well, showing research that a student with a grossly ineffective teacher for even one year loses $50,000 in lifetime earnings compared to a student assigned to an average teacher.

Many Democrats are coming around to the reality of the situation, and are standing up for poor and minority students. Politico reports that many high-profile Democrats have broken with the party on education reform agenda items such as charter schools, standardized testing, and teacher evaluation and accountability.

This follows work at the grassroots level from groups like Democrats for Education Reform and The Education Trust, two non-profits which have for years calling for reform to close the achievement gap between white and minority students, and rightly pointed to teacher union obstructionism as a prime reason so many efforts at public education reform have, until recently, gotten nowhere.

Even President Obama supports charters and accountability. His Education Secretary Arne Duncan supported the ruling. “Millions of young people in America … are disadvantaged by laws, practices and systems that fail to identify and support our best teachers and match them with our neediest students,” Duncan said, calling the ruling “a mandate to fix these problems.”

Rules that protect bad teachers from firing are common across the country, not just in California. According to New York’s school boards association, the average proceeding to remove even one incompetent teacher extends for 830 days and costs taxpayers $313,000. So teachers are far more likely to be moved to failing schools than fired. And these schools tend to be filled with black and Latino kids. The problem entrenches itself as those teachers stay in the system longer, where they are then protected by seniority. Not only does this keep a failing teacher in the classroom, but it makes it impossible for schools to hire new, more effective teachers.

The suit was filed by a group called Students Matter, made up of a group of 9 student plaintiffs, and backed by a Silicon Valley millionaire. They are considering similar lawsuits in Connecticut, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon and elsewhere.

Opposition to teacher tenure is as commonplace as it is common sense. But legislative reform has been nigh-on impossible, thanks to pressure from teachers unions on lawmakers to maintain their legal protections. It’s no surprise, then, that reform has required the courts to get involved.

However, striking down hiring and firing laws will likely improve California’s public education system by flushing out poor-quality teachers and making room for better ones. This will likely energize Democratic families frustrated by failing schools to demand action from their legislators. Then lawmakers will have to choose: Help struggling families get the same quality public education as their better-off peers, or continue protecting teachers unions from competition and accountability? It’s an uneviable position, born from a disgusting history of pandering to and prioritizing labor at the expense of society’s most vulnerable. Let’s hope they do the right thing.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial
KEYWORDS: 0bama; blackcommunity; educationandschools
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1 posted on 06/16/2014 4:22:01 AM PDT by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin
"Many Democrats are coming around to the reality of the situation, and are standing up for poor and minority students."

You mean coming around to the reality Republicans have been telling people for years?

2 posted on 06/16/2014 4:24:42 AM PDT by Mr. K (Quiddom (or was it Qiddom))
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To: Kaslin

Them chickens are a comin’ home to roost, dontcha know.


3 posted on 06/16/2014 4:27:53 AM PDT by mazda77
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To: Kaslin

Any ruling coming out of CA is suspect since the judiciary is so corrupt. This could be a scheme to rid the system of whites and replace them with blacks and Mexicans.


4 posted on 06/16/2014 4:32:19 AM PDT by Neoliberalnot (Marxism works well only with the uneducated and the unarmed.)
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To: Kaslin

The article fails to mention one of the biggest problems this poses for the Democrats. If they reform the school and get minority students a quality education, then presumably they may be able to think for themselves. Then, they may start questioning the Democratic mantra....


5 posted on 06/16/2014 4:34:41 AM PDT by Old Teufel Hunden
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To: Kaslin
Democrats prioritizing traditional families here? Highly unlikely.
6 posted on 06/16/2014 4:36:54 AM PDT by Olog-hai
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To: Kaslin

You mean that after 50 years of The Great Society there are some black families left? /S


7 posted on 06/16/2014 4:37:57 AM PDT by Pearls Before Swine
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To: Mr. K

“Many Democrats are coming around to the reality of the situation, and are standing up for poor and minority students.”

They are coming around to realization that with a more informed electorate, they are are losing votes.

Politicians in general are not concerned with the citizens welfare, only with votes and largesse that they can steal via the law.


8 posted on 06/16/2014 4:43:56 AM PDT by Nailbiter
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To: Kaslin

Let me just say that:
1. I have no luv for Teachers Unions, and
2. The concept of “tenure” for K-12 teachers is ridiculous

With that out of the way, I don’t think it fair that the teachers get the lion’s share of the blame here. When you’re talking about the inner city, you’re dealing with a population that is either apathetic, or even hostile, to learning. Even if you took good teachers and put them in such an environment, how long before they quit or give up?

Case in point: I know a young man who taught at an inner city school and was stabbed by a student. The student got a slap on the wrist. That was the first and last year the young man was a teacher. He is now pursuing a degree in computer science instead.

Until the inner city culture changes, you are just re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.


9 posted on 06/16/2014 4:45:37 AM PDT by rbg81
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To: Neoliberalnot

Equal education does not mean quality education for all.

A (bad) way around this ruling is to match white kids with bad teachers & schools, giving the blacks & Latinos preference in the good schools. That will better balance the racial numbers, while improving nothing.


10 posted on 06/16/2014 4:50:30 AM PDT by Mister Da (The mark of a wise man is not what he knows, but what he knows he doesn't know!)
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To: Kaslin

MANY?

What %? 0.037???


11 posted on 06/16/2014 4:57:52 AM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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To: Old Teufel Hunden

I think this IS them questioning the mantra. This judge will face tough times due to this ruling!


12 posted on 06/16/2014 5:02:33 AM PDT by gr8eman (A good rant should have the word "crap" in it at least 4 times!)
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To: rbg81

I think POTUS has made it pretty clear that everything is the white mans fault.


13 posted on 06/16/2014 5:04:02 AM PDT by Rome2000
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To: rbg81
"With that out of the way, I don’t think it fair that the teachers get the lion’s share of the blame here. When you’re talking about the inner city, you’re dealing with a population that is either apathetic, or even hostile, to learning. Even if you took good teachers and put them in such an environment, how long before they quit or give up?"

You raise an important point. I started out teaching in the inner city in a parochial school. At the first opportunity I got out into a suburban school. I was subjected to non-stop cursing, insults, accusations of racism and periodic threats and physical intimidation. I spent at least one to two hours daily dealing with disciplinary matters which never seemed to improve, since the school could not afford to expel anyone. Some of the students made an effort academically, but they were very ill prepared for high school level work. Most of them did almost no homework and were incapable of passing a grade-level test.

Many of these kids are in a horrid home and community environment which is hostile to education. Replacing a teacher is not going to help them nearly as much as addressing the home environment, the anti-education culture, and the social promotion practices of the lower primary grades. Kids who can't read beyond a 2nd or 3rd grade level can't succeed in high school, no matter who tries to teach them.

14 posted on 06/16/2014 5:06:29 AM PDT by Think free or die
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To: Kaslin

I cannot tell you what awful math teachers I had


15 posted on 06/16/2014 5:07:28 AM PDT by yldstrk ( My heroes have always been cowboys)
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To: Kaslin

Didn’t Obama kill the charter schools in DC..how can this reporter say that Obozo’s “coming around?”


16 posted on 06/16/2014 5:10:02 AM PDT by ken5050 ("One useless man is a shame, two are a law firm, three or more are a Congress".. John Adams)
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To: Think free or die
And then they maybe get a job slicing cold cuts.

Remember, don't ask for 3/4 pound of turkey when shopping.

They only do half pound or pound.

17 posted on 06/16/2014 5:14:01 AM PDT by Rome2000
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To: Kaslin

-——energize Democratic families——

Ha.... the point of being democrat is to not want to be energized. Then there is the family. There is real question that those most effected don’t really have families in the conventional sense. They are pretty much a village


18 posted on 06/16/2014 5:14:56 AM PDT by bert ((K.E. N.P. N.C. +12 ..... History is a process, not an event)
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To: Rome2000

I want half a pound of Baloney.

thanks, now I want half a half pound of baloney


19 posted on 06/16/2014 5:16:33 AM PDT by bert ((K.E. N.P. N.C. +12 ..... History is a process, not an event)
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To: rbg81

I think you raise some good points.

However, it seems to me that teaching enthusiastic students with lots of parental support is comparatively easy. I dare say, had I had the Internet as a student, I would have learned more on my own than in a classroom setting, likely only needing periodic guidance. A good part of my K-12 education was waiting around to be spoonfed the next morsel of info, especially once I had the basics down (like by the 5th grade).

Does one really need an education degree, periodic seminars, tenure, early retirement, etc. to teach the high end students? The “work” of teaching - where we need the best and brightest dedicated creative professionals - is in the difficult kids in the bad situations.


20 posted on 06/16/2014 5:38:55 AM PDT by chrisser (Senseless legislation does nothing to solve senseless violence.)
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To: rbg81

When you’re talking about the inner city, you’re dealing with a population that is either apathetic, or even hostile, to learning. Even if you took good teachers and put them in such an environment, how long before they quit or give up?””

Exactly, I know a couple of people who learned valuable lessons when teaching for less than one year in an African ghetto. Black culture has little regard for education and being from the left-side of the bell curve makes it tougher. All one has to do is look at every city and country dominated by Africans. The picture is not pretty.


21 posted on 06/16/2014 6:27:13 AM PDT by Neoliberalnot (Marxism works well only with the uneducated and the unarmed.)
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To: Kaslin
And, unsurprisingly, districts usually place failing teachers in predominantly black and Hispanic schools.

Actually, no. The district doesn't place them there. They end up there because the students are so difficult that teacher turn-over rate is very high. Teachers who get hired there usually can't hack it, and either manage to scramble out to a better school or -- more often -- leave teaching altogether because even working at Starbucks is preferable to being assaulted by a little gangster and learning that no one is going to do anything about it.

So those are the schools with the openings, and those are the schools who will hire anyone they can in hopes that the teacher can just keep the kids in the room for 55 minutes and nothing gets set on fire. If you think I'm kidding, be aware that I am a LAUSD teacher, and I've seen it.

I mean, yes, there are bad teachers (or rather, there are teachers who would have been fine in a classroom in Iowa 70 years ago when children had manners, parents had responsibility and control, and the principal had a big wooden paddle,) but they can't manage a classroom full of entitled minority students with crippled home-lives, no discipline, and carte blanche to do anything they want.

22 posted on 06/16/2014 6:33:11 AM PDT by A_perfect_lady
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To: Think free or die

Not to mention that kids today all seem to have PSPs, smartphones, iPods, and are utterly addicted to them. They don’t read, they talk, or listen to music, or watch videos (horrible ones, generally.) Their heads are full of junk and junk is all they like. Even kids on foodstamps have these expensive toys (easier to buy when the government is paying for all your food.)


23 posted on 06/16/2014 6:37:16 AM PDT by A_perfect_lady
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To: A_perfect_lady
I believe you. My daughter graduated with a degree in social work and promptly landed a job. She was well-liked by most of her clients-- parents of autistic children, some of whom actually followed her advice and saw real results; but most of whom did the bare minimum necessary to keep their government checks coming.

Trouble is, she made little money at it. The agency for which she worked had arcane rules on mileage reimbursement such as going directly to a client in a neighboring county was considered "commuting" and not reimbursable, whereas a five mile drive over to the next client was.

After a few months she landed a job at a nearby juvenile lock-up, better hourly wage, less time on the road and decent benefits. She loved the job and enjoyed seeing results when her charges were mostly runaways, teenage prostitutes and the like. The facility had such a low recidivism rate that they eventually went out of the area to keep it filled. Of course, that meant getting gang bangers and the like in from Philadelphia. As that happened, she begin to fear for her personal safety.

Eventually, she discovered that she could make more money with her degree at a call center doing customer service support, not that it has a lot to do with a social work degree, but because they wanted a college degree.

24 posted on 06/16/2014 6:53:57 AM PDT by Vigilanteman (Obama: Fake black man. Fake Messiah. Fake American. How many fakes can you fit in one Zer0?)
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To: Vigilanteman
Your daughter was wise. Personal safety is an issue when you work with children, because as an adult, you come to be seen as completely unimportant. I mean, your safety simply does not matter next to "the needs" of the children. If that child "needs" to kick you, punch you, set a fire in your room, vandalize your car, well, you need to figure out how to "meet his needs" better.

I'm pretty good at handling children but we have an autistic boy who is bigger than me and apparently has some violent "needs" sometimes. I warned my principal (who is a nice guy but a little too mellow about such things) that if that kid ever hits me, I'm getting a lawyer. I'm hoping he won't be in my classroom next year.

25 posted on 06/16/2014 7:36:55 AM PDT by A_perfect_lady
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To: Kaslin
Judge Rolf M. Treu’s ruling struck down teacher tenure, while freeing districts from spending hundreds of thousands to fire teachers and from having to fire newly-hired teachers first during layoffs.

The primary way this ruling will be used will be to fire the 'ideologically impure' first. In a sane world, you'd expect to see layoffs for incompetence, but when was the last time you noticed a surplus of sanity in acedemia?

26 posted on 06/16/2014 7:41:21 AM PDT by zeugma (I have never seen anyone cross the street to avoid a black man in a suit.)
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To: Elsie

Yeah, the “many” struck me as funny.
Why are not ALL democrats prioritizing the rebuilding of black families over the interests of teachers’ unions?


27 posted on 06/16/2014 7:43:04 AM PDT by MrB (The difference between a Humanist and a Satanist - the latter admits whom he's working for)
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To: MrB
Why are not ALL democrats prioritizing the rebuilding of black families over the interests of teachers’ unions?

$$$


28 posted on 06/16/2014 7:46:10 AM PDT by Fightin Whitey
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To: Fightin Whitey

Yeah, we knew ‘dat.


29 posted on 06/16/2014 7:46:32 AM PDT by MrB (The difference between a Humanist and a Satanist - the latter admits whom he's working for)
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To: MrB

Well, sometimes they do things for reasons other than money, of course.

Vengeance, for instance. Envy. Hatred, most frequently.

Sometimes just sheer spite.


30 posted on 06/16/2014 7:49:09 AM PDT by Fightin Whitey
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To: Fightin Whitey

Could be both - the leftist politicians know that they need campaign contributions in order to get elected in order to have the power to cut the successful off at the knees.


31 posted on 06/16/2014 7:51:53 AM PDT by MrB (The difference between a Humanist and a Satanist - the latter admits whom he's working for)
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To: MrB

Good point.

They are Equal Opportunity Destroyers.


32 posted on 06/16/2014 8:10:36 AM PDT by Fightin Whitey
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To: Mr. K
You mean coming around to the reality Republicans have been telling people for years?

Democrats - never good with math - have FINALLY figured out there are more people with children than there are teachers' with their greedy hands out...

Tea Party's been pushing Charter Schools and Vouchers... guess some young parents are staring to hear us. Bye-bye democrats...

33 posted on 06/16/2014 8:17:28 AM PDT by GOPJ (#2 reply spot RESERVED for Tokyo Rose comments: "nothing works - give up - it's all hopeless".)
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To: Kaslin

Blacks and immigrants will still vote 80% for the Democrat Party.

Exhibit One:

Detroit and East St. Louis.


34 posted on 06/16/2014 9:28:12 AM PDT by zeestephen
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To: Think free or die

Many of these kids are in a horrid home and community environment which is hostile to education. Replacing a teacher is not going to help them nearly as much as addressing the home environment, the anti-education culture, and the social promotion practices of the lower primary grades.

...of course this is true, and it is the only thing that holds back the verbal tirades I used to unleash on teachers that I came across...it would have been well if I hadn’t run my mouth so much at one time, but, well, that’s that...

...my only teaching experience was Catholic CCD, which I did for two years, and gladly quit...naturally, I did it for free, but even if I’d been remunerated, I’d have left...other people’s sassy children hold no charm for me...all that being said, I believe every parishioner in a modern Catholic church should be required to do a two year stint in CCD...it would open some eyes...


35 posted on 06/16/2014 9:45:32 AM PDT by IrishBrigade (')
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To: Neoliberalnot

Go read the decision:

http://studentsmatter.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/Tenative-Decision.pdf


36 posted on 06/16/2014 9:49:32 AM PDT by vette6387
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To: Rome2000

Some place can do 1/4 or 1/3.

Try for 3/8 and you’ll GET 1/2.


37 posted on 06/16/2014 10:01:53 AM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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To: bert

I can get it for you wholesale...


38 posted on 06/16/2014 10:02:32 AM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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To: zeestephen
Immigrants can not vote until they are US citizen.

Not that it matters to the rats as long as the vote rat party

39 posted on 06/16/2014 10:05:34 AM PDT by Kaslin (He needed the ignorant to reelect him, and he got them. Now we all have to pay the consequenses)
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To: Kaslin
Immigrants can not vote until they are US citizen.

Wasn't that why the Dems pushed so hard for "motor voter"? A lot of states give them driver licenses and magically they're on the voter rolls....

40 posted on 06/16/2014 10:07:14 AM PDT by nascarnation (Toxic Baraq Syndrome: hopefully infecting a Dem candidate near you)
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To: A_perfect_lady
... because even working at Starbucks is preferable to being assaulted by a little gangster and learning that no one is going to do anything about it.

Meanwhile; in Indianapolis...


Paddling, Taylor said, was part of teaching back then. And it was effective at controlling bad behavior.

“Sometimes that’s what had to happen,” she said. “I always told the students ‘I expect you to behave and if you don’t, well if I paddle you once, I won’t have to again.’ ”

 

http://www.indystar.com/story/news/2014/06/15/longtime-ips-teacher-celebrates-th-birthday/10556101/

 

41 posted on 06/16/2014 10:09:57 AM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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To: A_perfect_lady
... when the government TAXPAYER!!! is paying for all your food.)
42 posted on 06/16/2014 10:10:37 AM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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To: Kaslin

Any and all attempts to force good teachers into black or Hispanic schools will fail. Good teachers will want to teach students who want to learn, and they do not want to (nor will they) teach violent, rude, brutal Urban Ferals.

Nor do they want to have their car keyed, be beaten by students, be raped by students, be killed by students, ad nauseam.

When minority students acquire the student behaviors of successful white students, they can be taught with some success.

HOWEVER ! ! - given the IQ disparities between black and Hispanic students and white students, to expect black/Hispanic scores to reach the white scores is to ask the teachers to do the impossible.

When professional race card players (most if not all Democrats) say they will accomplish anything that will result in black/Hispanic academic test score equality with white scores, they assure the cheating made infamous in the Atlanta, GA school system.


43 posted on 06/16/2014 11:44:32 AM PDT by GladesGuru
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To: rbg81

Teachers are a cohort enriching themselves improperly because they take their salary knowing they can’t educate the “students”.

Taking a job which one knows one can’t accomplish is also commonly known as fraud.

Sorry, but teachers are frauds improperly enriching themselves.

Had they, as a group, discussed these issues I would support them. As it it, I hold they should be deal;t with as the frauds they really are.

How about chopping salaries, removing pensions & bennies?

“But, the Lil’ darlins’ will be dealing drugs if they are not in school” is the commie/union whine.

Sorry, they are dealing drugs in the halls as I type.

The Pooblic Skrewl Collective is beyond repair - time to start anew.

I suggest Google search for “We Test And How” - Carry_Okie’s perspective on the Hives of teh Collective.

;-)


44 posted on 06/16/2014 12:00:20 PM PDT by GladesGuru
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To: Kaslin
This ruling may make it harder for incompetent teachers to keep their jobs, but I don't see how it hurts the unions per se. The unions will just have different members paying dues.

Also, this decision is a bad precedent. Just because this judge doesn't like the results of the challenged laws, he decides they're unconstitutional. Based on reasoning like this, any judge can do anything.

45 posted on 06/16/2014 1:08:11 PM PDT by T Ruth (Islam shall be defeated.)
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To: GladesGuru

I’m not sure any mere moral could make a dent with some of these inner city students. Does that mean these teachers are frauds for trying? That’s too extreme for me....it is still their time and effort. Many, many people get paid for merely showing up...not just teachers. Maybe truth to power would be to change their titles from “teacher” to “babysitter”. But I’m sure that would be considered damaging to everyone’s self esteem....can’t have that.


46 posted on 06/16/2014 1:22:49 PM PDT by rbg81
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To: chrisser

Their are fundamentally three tiers of students:

The better students are not taught so much as guided and engaged. The ones in the middle are taught in the conventional sense. The ones at the bottom are warehoused until they’re “done”—if you’re lucky, they learn enough of the three Rs to function in society.

From a student perspective, much of this is self selection. A bad teacher can potentially cause a student to go from an upper tier to a lower one. Conversely, a good teacher can cause a bad student to go from a lower tier to a higher one. But these are exceptions to the rule.


47 posted on 06/16/2014 1:29:39 PM PDT by rbg81
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To: Elsie

well that’s just great....... .75 pounds please


48 posted on 06/16/2014 2:09:48 PM PDT by bert ((K.E. N.P. N.C. +12 ..... History is a process, not an event)
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To: rbg81
"Their are fundamentally three tiers of students: The better students are not taught so much as guided and engaged. The ones in the middle are taught in the conventional sense. The ones at the bottom are warehoused until they’re “done”—if you’re lucky, they learn enough of the three Rs to function in society."

Well said. Many of those in the middle have the inherent ability to be in the top tier but lack consistent effort. All can be taught, but methods and expectations have to be adjusted.

49 posted on 06/16/2014 8:15:10 PM PDT by Think free or die
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To: bert
Would you like some cheese with your order??



50 posted on 06/17/2014 4:40:19 AM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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