Thursday, May 31, 2007

Successful school scuttled by teacher's union

Here is one illustration of what is wrong with American schools. In Dayton, Ohio there is a state school that seemed to operate well. It is a mainly African-American school in a poor area. It is small and has done what other schools in the couldn’t: teach.

This year all the graduates have been accepted into college. Facing budget cuts the school district is going to lay off staff and the successful teachers at this school have been targeted to lose their jobs. The district is full of teachers who can’t teach but they are safe from cut backs.

The New York Times says “the teacher’s union requires layoffs to be made according to seniority.”

I have long thought the teacher’s union is one of the most destructive forces in education. And this rule is one major reason for it. As long as an incompetent teacher has held a job more years than a good teacher it is the good teacher that the union demands be fired.

The union tries to make teaching positions easy money for teachers. It has no concern about children or about education. And it is a major source of support for low-life politicians so government tends to cave in to this educational mafia. It spends much of its time defending mediocrities and incompetents sheltering them from any forms of discipline. A teacher should have job protection due to performance not merely because they are old.

When John Stossel exposed how big labour is destroying education the teacher’s unions targeted his trying to get him fired. They failed at that as well. The only thing the teacher’s union has done successfully is help ruin education in America. Education ought to be about the students not a government gravy train for lackluster teachers who get a free ride due to seniority.

Certainly if a school is under performing then it is the teachers who have been on staff the longest who are most responsible for the situation as they have had he most input.

Funding of education ought not go to districts or schools but ought to follow students. And students should be free to avoid bad schools even if it is the neighborhood school. This is what vouchers will do. But, of course, that puts market-based discipline into education and the delinquents in the teacher’s union oppose discipline. So the downward spiral continues.

Labels: ,