E2010 Wired

The power of our words can inspire change in a single person, then two, then the world.

Tag Archives: postaday2011

Detroit Sends Layoff Notices To Every Public School Teacher | TPMMuckraker

Myrina Hibbler/Michigan Teacher

Detroit Sends Layoff Notices To Every Public School Teacher | TPMMuckraker. This is a must read!

As Reuters reports, a new law in Michigan gives Detroit Public Schools’ Emergency Financial Manager Robert Bobb the power to alter collective bargaining agreements and even fire elected officials if he believes it will prevent a financial emergency. And Bobb “fully” intends to use that authority, he said in the statement.

Detroit is certainly not the first school system to issue mass layoff notices. TPM reported in February of a similar case in Providence, Rhode Island. But the layoff notices, of course, are not very appealing to the teachers who receive them.

“We’re just being walked all over, when we are the ones who help educate everyone else to get to the positions they’re in, including the emergency financial manager,” Carla Henry, a high school special education teachers, told the Detroit Free Press. “It took a teacher to educate him.”

Gov. Proposes A three-year college degree in Ohio

The Shortlist on Education Changes (Reform, in some cases, would be a stretch)

THREE-YEAR DEGREES: Ohio Governor John Kasich wants the state’s universities to offer a three-year degree program to make college more affordable, The Plain-Dealer reports. Students would have to squeeze in more courses during their time at school in order to satisfy degree requirements, much as they do today without an established three-year program. Ball State University in Indiana already offers three-year degrees for 30 of its 180 degree programs and Rhode Islandlawmakers approved a measure in 2009 to offer three-year degrees at both of the state’s public universities. Meanwhile, Kasich’s budget anticipates a 10.5 percent cut in higher education funding in the 2012 fiscal year, less than had been feared, followed by a 3.7 percent increase in 2013, according to The Columbus Dispatch.

A three-year college degree in Ohio?.

Tennessee Gets Closer to Eliminating Collective Bargaining Laws

While the rest of the country focused on the threat of a government shutdown, a small group attended a forum on collective bargaining laws in Tennessee led by Steve Thompson, former lead negotiator for the Sullivan Education Association. The forum was hosted by the Upper East Tennessee Central Labor Council of the AFL-CIO.

Clearly, the goal of the forum was to educate folks about collective bargaining practices and not focus on the politics of union busting. Ironically, Tennessee has the weakest collective bargaining laws in the country. Despite that fact, “State lawmakers are … wrestling with a bill that … would eliminate teachers’ ability to negotiate salaries and working conditions with local school boards.”

But politics is what this is all about. Thompson has been working directly with Tennessee’s Lt. Gov. Ramsey on a bill that would eliminate much of union members collective bargaining rights. He stated that the  Lt. Governor’s position on the bill “is more about political payback for the Tennessee Education Association, which in recent years has given more money to the election campaigns of Democrats.”

“He hasn’t even asked us how negotiations work and what we gain from it…” Thompson said of Ramsey. “There are many years we didn’t ask for a raise. … Sullivan County bargains, but Kingsport and Bristol do not. … All the teachers in Kingsport and Bristol are happy we bargain. When our situation improves, their situation improves. … We don’t get paid a fortune, but it’s competitive.”

Kingsport labor attorney Bruce Shine argued that Tennessee has one of the weakest collective bargaining laws in the United States.

“In this (collective bargaining) debate, the only voice for the student is the teacher…” said Shine, who is also a Times-News columnist. “The question is not salary. The question is what type of education will the child receive? … Collective bargaining covers a whole group of issues that otherwise would never come before the school board.”

Labor group holds forum on collective bargaining – Kingsport Times-News Online.

The Road to Success in Florida – A Great Example for Members Who Want to Make a Difference | StudentsFirst.org

Great example of what we can do when we unite around a great cause and take action.

“Last month we congratulated Florida for passing one of the country’s most aggressive education reform packages. The Student Success Act implements several measures that put students first. Read our previous blog post, “StudentsFirst applauds Florida’s passage of breakthrough education reform legislation”, for highlights of the new law.”

“Just before the final legislative vote, hundreds of members in Florida — including parents, educators and other concerned citizens — responded immediately to our call to action. Members rallied together so that state leaders knew exactly where they stood, as constituents, on education reform.”

The Road to Success in Florida – A Great Example for Members Who Want to Make a Difference | StudentsFirst.org.

NAACP Report – Misplaced Priorities, Over Incarcerate, Under Educate

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