Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens Flee

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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Jessica » Fri Mar 04, 2011 8:37 pm UTC

Can't see it at work. What is it a link to, of etc?
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Роберт » Fri Mar 04, 2011 8:57 pm UTC

addams wrote:Hell-o.
Here is a video that was sent from someone that is in Wisconsin.

http://vimeo.com/20622847

It has a song with it. The song says that God is going to cut someone down.

There are people that believe, that, what we do for the good of others, is, the work that we do for God.

I wish them well.

Sound like you are wishing that people shoot one of our elected officials, and hope they are more successful than Loughner was in his attack on Giffords.

Well, I hope you get arrested before you cause any harm, directly or indirectly.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby addams » Fri Mar 04, 2011 9:18 pm UTC

Jessica wrote:Can't see it at work. What is it a link to, of etc?


It is of the protest in Wisconsin.
At least that is what is says that it is.

There is a song running in the back ground. It fades from the crowd cheering to Johnny Cash singing, "Sooner or Later God's going to cut them down".

The visual is people in Wisconsin. It could be, people at the Rally in Wisconsin 2011.

There are young white people dressed up in American Indian clothes. They are beating on drums made from decorated plastic five gallon buckets.
There are other images, as well; Some more interesting than others.

There was a sign taped to a bucket. It said, "Pledge allegiance to liberty and justice for all."

There was a sign taped to a statue. People are leaving notices for one another.
One of the notices gives time and location for Friday night services for the Jewish community.

I thought that was touching. Really sweet. It is an old Jewish tradition. Right?

You can see it for yourself when you get home.

I wish them well. They look like nice enough people to me. It must be noisy in that building.

The following was written by a person that is in Wisconsin:

"Friday, March 4th:
It's getting weird here. It's Day 5 of the illegal banning of the State Capitol to the public. A small group of die-hard protesters still gather around one of the entrances, blocked by State Troopers to enter THEIR Capitol building. Thousands of post-it notes are stuck to the closed doors around the building. A pile of blankets and sleeping bags sit on the ground at the base of the building where some are still sleeping outside at night in protest. It's really really cold here. Walker knew that banning public access to the Capitol would be a big blow to the protesters, and for practical purposes, it has; while I've stood out in the freezing cold for 4 hours at a time, being able to warm up and seek shelter inside with the building protesters helped keep me going. However, tomorrow is supposed to be the biggest rally yet. Cold, snow, rain won't stop us; there will be thousands of us out there making a whole lot of noise. We haven't given up. We won't give up."

It seems that 'things' have changed in Wisconsin. The Dictator/Governor is using the weather to subdue the people. Wisconsin weather will subdue anyone. It is COLD there.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Bubbles McCoy » Fri Mar 04, 2011 9:57 pm UTC

This goes back a ways, but as it's on topic I don't feel all to bad about it -
Garm wrote:Same logic dictates that private sector unions a negotiating against the consumers. That's kind of a dead end either way. Taxpayers don't just look for cost-effective ways to educate their children, they look for ways to get their children a good education. On the plus side, teachers unions (since we're talking about education here), help keep class sizes down, arts in schools, and compensation high enough that sometimes, smart people are willing to teach. On the minus side, the teachers unions protect poor or aging teachers and resist evaluative practices with knee-jerk efficiency. Depending on how you look at it, teachers unions have either a positive or negative effect on curriculum.

I suppose the only way I can reconcile how the unions oppose better evaluation (or any evaluation, for that matter) while supporting smaller class rooms is that they'll support whatever issues benefit them, regardless of educational quality. While teachers need some representation to ensure the job is actually decent, the union will maintain wage bargaining rights which strikes me as far and away the most important aspect of maintaining job appeal. Otherwise, I'm unconvinced the unions will be an agent for desirable change.

Which I guess is what I'm really try to get at - do you really think unions are going to be central to meaningful school reform? By and large it seems to me like there's fairly strong political will towards better schools in recent years, there have been many attempts from the government with popular support to improve education. Yet in these attempts I rarely see the union as anything but the villain, opposing any change simply because the status quo has become comfortable to them; they see no reason to challenge it out of fear of the unknown. That's not to say there will never be missteps, but we have to try something. If the union will only accept a proposed reform is it benefits them in every imaginable way, that's just not acceptable. Good reforms can come in many different shapes and sizes and I'm not willing to restrict options to just the ones that benefit workers, happy workers are just a means to an end and not an end in themselves.

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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Telchar » Fri Mar 04, 2011 10:09 pm UTC

Bubbles McCoy wrote:I suppose the only way I can reconcile how the unions oppose better evaluation (or any evaluation, for that matter) while supporting smaller class rooms is that they'll support whatever issues benefit them, regardless of educational quality.


Why are we suprised that teachers unions advocate for teachers and not education? Do we expect UAW do advocate for Ford? It's an odd expectation that seems singularly focused on teacher's unions.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby mmmcannibalism » Fri Mar 04, 2011 10:47 pm UTC

Telchar wrote:
Bubbles McCoy wrote:I suppose the only way I can reconcile how the unions oppose better evaluation (or any evaluation, for that matter) while supporting smaller class rooms is that they'll support whatever issues benefit them, regardless of educational quality.


Why are we suprised that teachers unions advocate for teachers and not education? Do we expect UAW do advocate for Ford? It's an odd expectation that seems singularly focused on teacher's unions.


This is just a theory. I think it may have to do with the difference between businesses and public education. If the UAW somehow changes labor contracts such that it destroys the company*, they become unemployed. If teachers hypothetically change evaluations and such to the point that it deserves education, they will still get funded.

*ignoring potential bailouts/restricting this discussion to relatively small companies.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby rath358 » Fri Mar 04, 2011 11:17 pm UTC

Wodashin wrote:I see. I wasn't sure how this all worked with the school system. Thanks for telling me.

Sell power plants what?

Ulterior motives?

selling the power plants (as in the facilities/generators themselves) to outside companies without any sort of bidding or oversight.

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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby duckshirt » Sat Mar 05, 2011 3:45 am UTC

Damages to Capitol [might cost] $7.5 million... so much for peaceful protest.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby The Great Hippo » Sat Mar 05, 2011 4:13 am UTC

duckshirt wrote:Damages to Capitol [might cost] $7.5 million... so much for peaceful protest.
Article wrote:Much of the damage apparently has come from tape used to put up signs and placards at the Capitol
Unless I'm grossly misreading, that doesn't sound like damage caused by violence.

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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby addams » Sat Mar 05, 2011 4:20 am UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:
duckshirt wrote:Damages to Capitol [might cost] $7.5 million... so much for peaceful protest.
Article wrote:Much of the damage apparently has come from tape used to put up signs and placards at the Capitol
Unless I'm grossly misreading, that doesn't sound like damage caused by violence.


Not only was what these people did nonviolent, but, they used painter's tape.
Painter's tape will not cause 7-5 million dollars in damage.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby netcrusher88 » Sat Mar 05, 2011 5:21 am UTC

Eh... if the walls are all marble it could still damage it. There's a special kind of tape you can use on marble, and painter's tape isn't it - this I learned at PAX East last year. A lot of the Hynes Convention Center is marble floors and there were about a half dozen rolls of tape in the building you could use on it. Gaff tape and painter's/masking tape weren't allowed on the marble and my understanding was breaking that rule would have resulted in a fine.

To be fair, masking tape is designed to not harm surfaces and even if it did cause significant damage I can't really blame the protesters for not knowing it.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby mmmcannibalism » Sat Mar 05, 2011 5:39 am UTC

Hmm, how does tape(of any kind) damage marble in a way that leads to costly repairs? is it a chemical thing?
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby sourmìlk » Sat Mar 05, 2011 5:43 am UTC

mmmcannibalism wrote:Hmm, how does tape(of any kind) damage marble in a way that leads to costly repairs? is it a chemical thing?


I'm going to guess "sticky residue that needs to be cleaned."
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby mmmcannibalism » Sat Mar 05, 2011 5:50 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:
mmmcannibalism wrote:Hmm, how does tape(of any kind) damage marble in a way that leads to costly repairs? is it a chemical thing?


I'm going to guess "sticky residue that needs to be cleaned."


Well the reason I ask is cleaning does not seem like something that should be that expensive.

unless public unions are driving up the price of marble scrubbing /joke
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby netcrusher88 » Sat Mar 05, 2011 6:20 am UTC

Most adhesives stick like, well, glue to marble sealant I guess. So they rip the protective coating right off the marble and you have to refinish that area.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Garm » Sat Mar 05, 2011 4:16 pm UTC

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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby addams » Sat Mar 05, 2011 9:11 pm UTC

Here:
http://legis.wisconsin.gov/AB40.pdf

I think that pdf is the bill.

There is a great deal of reading there.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby McCaber » Sat Mar 05, 2011 11:16 pm UTC

duckshirt wrote:Damages to Capitol [might cost] $7.5 million... so much for peaceful protest.

This figure just got edited down to $375 thousand. Still a lot, but nowhere near that first estimate.

And yeah, it's fucking COLD here. On a nice day it gets up to 40 or 45 F this time of year. Which puts a massive damper on protestors.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby addams » Sun Mar 06, 2011 5:02 am UTC

McCaber wrote:
duckshirt wrote:Damages to Capitol [might cost] $7.5 million... so much for peaceful protest.

This figure just got edited down to $375 thousand. Still a lot, but nowhere near that first estimate.

And yeah, it's fucking COLD here. On a nice day it gets up to 40 or 45 F this time of year. Which puts a massive damper on protestors.


You are there?! Oh My!
So? What is it like?

Are the people going to go home and give up? It is going to be difficult. It is not just teachers. As, the public employees stop spending money there, will be, less 'free' money.
'Free' money like 'free' water. Water that is not locked up in ice.

People that have choices may be leaving in flocks.
What are you seeing?
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby McCaber » Mon Mar 07, 2011 4:30 am UTC

Well, this is by far the most worked up I've ever seen my state. Everyone's divided and it's getting hard to talk to people who don't believe the same you do. There's no rioting yet, and most people are playing nice while protesting. On both sides.

I'm in Milwaukee, which is definitely not the center of this. But it should be, considering how fucked the public school system here will be soon. Between the removal of teacher compensation and cutting nearly a billion dollars in school funding, I'm very tempted just to ask why Scott Walker hates kids.

But a mass exodus like the one you're suggesting? Probably not going to happen.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Vaniver » Mon Mar 07, 2011 4:54 am UTC

McCaber wrote:I'm very tempted just to ask why Scott Walker hates kids.
Remember, none of that money goes to kids. If it did, they might feel better about going to prison, or work harder.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Lucrece » Mon Mar 07, 2011 8:25 am UTC

Vaniver wrote:
McCaber wrote:I'm very tempted just to ask why Scott Walker hates kids.
Remember, none of that money goes to kids. If it did, they might feel better about going to prison, or work harder.


And if for some reason they go through a period that disables them from meeting the standard? They get screwed permanently and recovery into a position where you can go back to study is made very unlikely? The merit-based line should be kept at the employment level, not educational level.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby jesseewiak » Mon Mar 07, 2011 8:54 am UTC

Vaniver wrote:
McCaber wrote:I'm very tempted just to ask why Scott Walker hates kids.
Remember, none of that money goes to kids. If it did, they might feel better about going to prison, or work harder.


Yup, teachers don't want public education to improve at all. They just want to get their fat paychecks and benefits and go home to their mansions and laugh at how many children they screwed over out of an education over their meal of caviar as they burn one hundred dollar bills.

Or just maybe they have a different idea about how to reform education that's not the same as the neoliberal, conservative, and libertarian consensus that's meant to undermine _or_ destroy public education, depending on what flavor of school 'reformer' you talk to. It couldn't be that at all.

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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Garm » Mon Mar 07, 2011 4:02 pm UTC

I don't think that anyone in this thread has taken the time to point out that all these pensions and healthcare benefits that the teachers get are paid for 100% by the teachers themselves. Same goes for other public sector union employees. Many (most?) companies have 401K matching programs. Public sector unions generally don't. It's all based on deferred wages.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Dark567 » Mon Mar 07, 2011 4:07 pm UTC

Garm wrote:I don't think that anyone in this thread has taken the time to point out that all these pensions and healthcare benefits that the teachers get are paid for 100% by the teachers themselves. Same goes for other public sector union employees. Many (most?) companies have 401K matching programs. Public sector unions generally don't. It's all based on deferred wages.

Well, thats only sort of true... if the pensions don't take in enough income the state is still on the hook to make up the difference in its payouts. At least this year this is expected to happen. A 401k's payouts aren't guaranteed by the government, these pensions are.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby sourmìlk » Mon Mar 07, 2011 5:26 pm UTC

Also we appear to be forgetting that teacher's unions already agreed to the cuts: they just want to keep their collective bargaining rights.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Garm » Mon Mar 07, 2011 6:01 pm UTC

Not to mention that the budget shortfalls are almost entirely explainable by the decision to invest the pension funds in the stock market (which is what the GOP want to do to Social Security, showing, again, how deeply ignorant they are).

http://www.cepr.net/documents/publications/pensions-2011-02.pdf
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Vaniver » Mon Mar 07, 2011 7:08 pm UTC

Lucrece wrote:And if for some reason they go through a period that disables them from meeting the standard? They get screwed permanently and recovery into a position where you can go back to study is made very unlikely? The merit-based line should be kept at the employment level, not educational level.
Who are we talking about here, the students?

jesseewiak wrote:Yup, teachers don't want public education to improve at all. They just want to get their fat paychecks and benefits and go home to their mansions and laugh at how many children they screwed over out of an education over their meal of caviar as they burn one hundred dollar bills.

Or just maybe they have a different idea about how to reform education that's not the same as the neoliberal, conservative, and libertarian consensus that's meant to undermine _or_ destroy public education, depending on what flavor of school 'reformer' you talk to. It couldn't be that at all.
Teachers as a whole are split. It's demonstrably true that teachers unions are opposed to programs that have demonstrably improved education outcomes for students. It also seems like burnout is higher among more enthusiastic / caring teachers. One doesn't need mansions or caviar to fall victim to the following truth:
Upton Sinclair wrote:It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Garm » Mon Mar 07, 2011 8:09 pm UTC

Most of the recent attempts at education reform, especially from the Federal level, have been top-down efforts. The teachers don't really get a say so saying that they ignore programs that have good results is disingenuous. They're not responsible for the reforms but they are being held responsible for the results. It's a really horrible position to be put into.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Lucrece » Mon Mar 07, 2011 8:12 pm UTC

Yes, said students. Especially when a degree is basically a gatekeeper to financial well-being. This seems to doom students who at the time of review don't have the habits/ability of effective students for a variety of reasons (being the breadwinner in family, psychological issues, lack of parental upbringing where studies are encouraged, or plain sheer laziness at that period of time). Not everyone is ready at a time in their life for an efficient lifestyle for studies, and I'm not comfortable with the idea that studies aren't a tool always available without immense complications if you miss the boat of the 18-20 year old. People returning to school in mid-20's to outright 40's is a possibility I think should be available to the population.

When you start instituting some educational elitism at such absurd levels such as a Bachelor's Degree (it's fine in the advanced fields like science and mathematics-- you need to prove competence in the foundation before you can begin to even move on to specialization), we have the problem existing where only a small portion of people have the opportunity at non-subsistence salaries. Particularly now that jobs such as a community worker and several positions that previously didn't require anything besides training and hands-on experience are now demanding Bachelor's Degrees (and set degrees are now setting people back ~60-80k dollars with how shark-like universities have become in this scheme to hype up the employment market with degree cutoffs, resulting in every high school student being taught that if they don't want to live on a day by day poverty level salary, they need to make said investment).
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby jesseewiak » Mon Mar 07, 2011 8:29 pm UTC

Vaniver wrote:
Lucrece wrote:And if for some reason they go through a period that disables them from meeting the standard? They get screwed permanently and recovery into a position where you can go back to study is made very unlikely? The merit-based line should be kept at the employment level, not educational level.
Who are we talking about here, the students?

jesseewiak wrote:Yup, teachers don't want public education to improve at all. They just want to get their fat paychecks and benefits and go home to their mansions and laugh at how many children they screwed over out of an education over their meal of caviar as they burn one hundred dollar bills.

Or just maybe they have a different idea about how to reform education that's not the same as the neoliberal, conservative, and libertarian consensus that's meant to undermine _or_ destroy public education, depending on what flavor of school 'reformer' you talk to. It couldn't be that at all.
Teachers as a whole are split. It's demonstrably true that teachers unions are opposed to programs that have demonstrably improved education outcomes for students. It also seems like burnout is higher among more enthusiastic / caring teachers. One doesn't need mansions or caviar to fall victim to the following truth:
Upton Sinclair wrote:It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!


Um, what 'demonstrable' education outcomes are teachers against? Charter Schools? Sorry, evidence is inconclusive. Removing tenure? A red herring. Standardized tests? Not really. The truth is, teacher's themselves shockingly have plenty of ways to improve the education system. Now, these reforms don't involve top-down reforms meant to destroy or defund public education, so they don't get talked up much by the corporate press.

That's not even getting into the fact the talking point of "US education sucks" is just that, a talking point. Yes, the bottom 20% to 33% are being failed, but ya' know the way to fix that? Cut child poverty by half to Western European levels via re-distributive policies. Now, that doesn't make for-profit charter school corporations or testing companies rich, so that doesn't get much play.

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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Dark567 » Mon Mar 07, 2011 9:02 pm UTC

jesseewiak wrote:Um, what 'demonstrable' education outcomes are teachers against? Charter Schools? Sorry, evidence is inconclusive. Removing tenure? A red herring. Standardized tests? Not really. The truth is, teacher's themselves shockingly have plenty of ways to improve the education system. Now, these reforms don't involve top-down reforms meant to destroy or defund public education, so they don't get talked up much by the corporate press.
Firing bad teachers. Thats the central issue.
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Seriously, if we just allowed administrators to fire teachers at will, I might be fine with everything else. Other things include the evaluations thing, unions require notice be given before observations and limit the number that can be done per year. Thats ridiculous. And even though the unions aren't blatantly against using standardized tests, they are against using them as an evaluation of their performance. Teaching needs to become more meritocratic. That involves raises based on performance not seniority(and layoffs too), merit pay(i.e. the top 20% of teachers each year get a 50% bonus), and removing teachers that are failing to provide a standard of education. Unions have opposed these reforms.
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby mmmcannibalism » Mon Mar 07, 2011 9:18 pm UTC

I can't read that image, do you have a larger copy.

Also, you mean a one year 50%(which sounds to me to be far too high) raise right?
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby jesseewiak » Mon Mar 07, 2011 9:24 pm UTC

Dark567 wrote:
jesseewiak wrote:Um, what 'demonstrable' education outcomes are teachers against? Charter Schools? Sorry, evidence is inconclusive. Removing tenure? A red herring. Standardized tests? Not really. The truth is, teacher's themselves shockingly have plenty of ways to improve the education system. Now, these reforms don't involve top-down reforms meant to destroy or defund public education, so they don't get talked up much by the corporate press.
Firing bad teachers. Thats the central issue.
Image
Seriously, if we just allowed administrators to fire teachers at will, I might be fine with everything else. Other things include the evaluations thing, unions require notice be given before observations and limit the number that can be done per year. Thats ridiculous. And even though the unions aren't blatantly against using standardized tests, they are against using them as an evaluation of their performance. Teaching needs to become more meritocratic. That involves raises based on performance not seniority(and layoffs too), merit pay(i.e. the top 20% of teachers each year get a 50% bonus), and removing teachers that are failing to provide a standard of education. Unions have opposed these reforms.


First of all, that's a nice infographic, but sort of an overdramatization of the actual process. See this post from ED Kain on Forbes - http://blogs.forbes.com/erikkain/2011/0 ... e-process/

First, this chart only applies to tenured teachers. Bad teachers can be weeded out much quicker before gaining tenure. School officials need to use this time window appropriately.

Second, the point of tenure is to protect teachers from arbitrarily being fired. Teachers need protection from over-zealous bosses and ideological politicians. This is the same thinking behind seniority rules, which protect more expensive teachers (i.e. veterans) from being laid off due to budget cuts. Teaching is not a high-paying job compared to jobs in the private sector, and one of the benefits is some job security. Occasionally this means bad teachers take longer to fire.

But the answer to that problem is not making all teachers easier to fire. This would undermine teacher recruitment. If you take away pensions, job security, tenure, the ability to unionize, and basically all the other perks of teaching, what you’re left with is a very difficult job with no job security, mediocre benefits, and relatively low pay. This is not how you attract good people to a profession, or how you guarantee a good education experience for your children. Paying starting teachers more but making their long-term prospects in the career less certain is also wrong-headed. High turnover is not desirable for any business, teaching included.

Third, the chart claims that it take 2-5 years to fire a bad teacher. This is true, but also misleading. The process requires one year of remediation. Is anyone suggesting that a remedial period is unwarranted? Many private sector jobs require similar remedial steps for ‘unsatisfactory’ employees. These steps take longer and are more complicated as the job in question becomes more difficult to assess. Successful teaching is very difficult to assess.

Then there are a series of hearings. This is the due process period put in place to ensure that the actual reasons behind firing the teacher are legitimate. Is the Tribune suggesting that there should be no hearing process at all? Even then, the hearings only take place if the teacher requests them. Many teachers will not put up this much of a fight, but some do.

The hearings take about ten months. Much of this time is spent filing paperwork, setting dates, and so forth. At the end of the ten months, if the School board agrees with the dismissal, the teacher is fired. That’s just under two years, most of which was spent attempting to boost the teacher’s performance. So in just under two years a teacher can be fired. However…

…at this point the teacher can file an appeal in court. This is where the Tribune is getting the vast bulk of time for its 2-5 years estimate. Again, any citizen who loses their job as the right to take this up in court. That there is a procedure outlined for teachers to do this is completely meaningless. Of course a teacher can file for wrongful dismissal in court. So can you if you are fired. This process can take years if you want to drag it out long enough, through appellate courts and a long and exhausting appeals process.

For those criticizing this process, would you deny Francisco Mendoza the right to appeal his termination? Mendoza was a 25-year veteran of the Chicago public schools, widely acknowledged as an excellent teacher. He took sick leave when he was diagnosed with cancer, and when he returned home he found a termination letter. Apparently the year of remedial work was overlooked in this case. Indeed, for every anecdote of bad teachers not getting fired, we can find others to show how excellent teachers were fired.

And if all that isn’t enough, a tiny bit of digging reveals that Chicago school district officials laid off 1300 teachers in 2010, including some tenured teachers who were recognized nationally for their quality – without any due process at all.


As for the rest of your arguments, management had to agree with the number of evaluations and requiring notice. But, fine. I bet most teacher's would be fine with no notice if the same people asking for that concession weren't also trying to destroy their benefits. And I agree with teacher's - standarized tests are next to useless as a measure of performance of a teacher. They're a measure of what school district you're teaching in. But even going with this thought on standardized tests, who's a better teacher? A teacher who takes a class of students from an 30% percentile perfomance to a 60% percentile performance on a standarized test or one who continually keeps a group of students above 90%?

Unions oppose these reforms because they don't actually work. Again,the number one reason for educational failures is _poverty._ For example, Finland has teacher support and autonomy, a 3% child poverty rate, and a 100% unionization of teachers all contribute to its level of success; America on the other hand has closer to 20% child poverty rate, much poorer access to healthcare, and has spent the last five years blaming – and punishing – teachers. The obligatory admission is that yes, of course there are bad teachers. But, there are bad people in every profession. We shouldn't remove tenure and benefits from a profession just because there are bad people in that profession.

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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Heisenberg » Mon Mar 07, 2011 9:45 pm UTC

Kain wrote:Teachers need protection from over-zealous bosses and ideological politicians.
Why? I don't have this. Why are teachers special? Are their bosses really really bad people? Because I have a solution for that problem.
Kain wrote:Many private sector jobs require similar remedial steps for ‘unsatisfactory’ employees.
I've never seen one. Sure, I've had jobs where they recommended a remediation period, but not one where it was required.
Kain wrote:Is the Tribune suggesting that there should be no hearing process at all?
Well, it seems like a redundant step that does nothing but impede administrators ability to run their own schools and decide who can and can't work for them. So you tell me. Why do we need hearings and appeals when they serve the same function?
jesseewiak wrote:who's a better teacher? A teacher who takes a class of students from an 30% percentile perfomance to a 60% percentile performance on a standarized test or one who continually keeps a group of students above 90%?
The first one. But I imagine with all the money Dark's throwing at the problem, he'd be willing to use a better metric than standardized testing.
jesseewiak wrote:Again,the number one reason for educational failures is _poverty._
Assuming that this wild allegation is true, is there any reason I can't work on poverty 6 days a week and on reforming education on the 7th? Because the current system is not only outrageously stupid, but also exceedingly harmful to teachers.

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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby jesseewiak » Mon Mar 07, 2011 10:12 pm UTC

Heisenberg wrote:Teachers need protection from over-zealous bosses and ideological politicians.

Why? I don't have this. Why are teachers special? Are their bosses really really bad people? Because I have a solution for that problem.


Because they've organized. Perhaps you and your fellow workers should join together in what one could call a 'union' of employees so that you are protected from overzealous employees. And yes, I know, conservatives think people can just leave new jobs and find new ones immediately if they have political bosses or ones with a grind against them.

Kain wrote:Many private sector jobs require similar remedial steps for ‘unsatisfactory’ employees.

I've never seen one. Sure, I've had jobs where they recommended a remediation period, but not one where it was required.


Again, find a better job or one that are far more organized? I've had jobs with required remediations and ones without. Not surprisingly, as I've gone forward in my career, I've had more with required remediation.

Kain wrote:Is the Tribune suggesting that there should be no hearing process at all?

Well, it seems like a redundant step that does nothing but impede administrators ability to run their own schools and decide who can and can't work for them. So you tell me. Why do we need hearings and appeals when they serve the same function?


Because they don't serve the same function. And as Kain pointed out, any person can file an appeal to the courts if they're fired. I can, you can, the guy who just got fired for punching his boss in the face can. And the reason why there is a review process for firings is because, guess what, there are politcs in a school just like any other workplace. There's an appeal process of the same sort for a firing with cause at most major corporations.

jesseewiak wrote:who's a better teacher? A teacher who takes a class of students from an 30% percentile perfomance to a 60% percentile performance on a standarized test or one who continually keeps a group of students above 90%?

The first one. But I imagine with all the money Dark's throwing at the problem, he'd be willing to use a better metric than standardized testing.


By the same token, I could make an argument that a teacher keeping differing groups of students at a high level of achievement year after year deserves just as much credit as a teacher that pulls up a less-than-mediocre student body.

jesseewiak wrote:Again,the number one reason for educational failures is _poverty._

Assuming that this wild allegation is true, is there any reason I can't work on poverty 6 days a week and on reforming education on the 7th? Because the current system is not only outrageously stupid, but also exceedingly harmful to teachers.


Because they go together. Oh, and because most of the conservative 'prescriptions' for educational reform will only excabrate the situation, not improve them. However harmful the current US educational system is to teachers, making their profession just another low-paid service job with no benefits would be even worse. And that is an endgame for large chunks of the power players in the conservative movement.

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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Lucrece » Mon Mar 07, 2011 10:24 pm UTC

Discrimination-based firing is already a problem that employers can easily cover up under lower performance reviews or "we found someone better". I'd hate to see a process where they make it easier to fire teachers like a coach who dedicated her life to her students and was beloved by the student body just because she revealed her wife was having a baby.

Non-discrimination laws are already stupidly hard to enforce and prove for in court.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/02/opini ... .html?_r=1
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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Heisenberg » Mon Mar 07, 2011 10:36 pm UTC

jesseewiak wrote:Because they don't serve the same function. And as Kain pointed out, any person can file an appeal to the courts if they're fired. I can, you can, the guy who just got fired for punching his boss in the face can. And the reason why there is a review process for firings is because, guess what, there are politcs in a school just like any other workplace. There's an appeal process of the same sort for a firing with cause at most major corporations.
So... they do serve the same function? You just get two tries to prove you were fired improperly? Also, if you're trying to prove that you're being fired for political reasons, and not because you're bad at your job, wouldn't it be helpful to have some sort of metric by which you could prove your value as an educator?
jesseewiak wrote:By the same token, I could make an argument that a teacher keeping differing groups of students at a high level of achievement year after year deserves just as much credit as a teacher that pulls up a less-than-mediocre student body.
But, you're not making that argument, you're arguing that there's no way to tell who's a better teacher, despite the fact that there are many ways of evaluating teachers outside of standardized testing.
jesseewiak wrote:Because they go together. Oh, and because most of the conservative 'prescriptions' for educational reform will only excabrate the situation, not improve them. However harmful the current US educational system is to teachers, making their profession just another low-paid service job with no benefits would be even worse. And that is an endgame for large chunks of the power players in the conservative movement.
First, stop trying to make this into a conservative-liberal thing. It's not. Anyone who looks at our education system and thinks it's swell is a testament to the monumental failure of our education system. Second, Dark's proposal was entirely and totally positive for teachers. Paying some teachers extra money is not hurting anyone. Third, if you personally feel that education reform is worthless, that's fine. Don't tell me I can't try to fix this broken, outdated system.

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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Dark567 » Mon Mar 07, 2011 10:38 pm UTC

mmmcannibalism wrote:I can't read that image, do you have a larger copy.

Also, you mean a one year 50%(which sounds to me to be far too high) raise right?

The link jesseewiak provided includes a larger image. Of course the number might be too high, but its not supposed to be exact, its a rough estimate, I was actually also considering 100% bonus for the top 10%, which was Jack Welsh's incentive structure at GE. The point was that high bonuses for a relatively small number of employees often increase performance better then smaller bonus to a larger number of employees, although it needs to be a large enough number that most employees feel its attainable.
jesseewiak wrote:As for the rest of your arguments, management had to agree with the number of evaluations and requiring notice. But, fine. I bet most teacher's would be fine with no notice if the same people asking for that concession weren't also trying to destroy their benefits. And I agree with teacher's - standarized tests are next to useless as a measure of performance of a teacher. They're a measure of what school district you're teaching in.
Yes, management had to agree to it, but that doesn't mean its a good system. Standardized testing is useless for comparing teachers from two different school districts, but it can be useful for measuring two teachers within the same school district(assuming other factors like subject taught are accounted for). Standardized testing doesn't have to be the only factors or even a factor anyway, my point is that I want some clear evaluation metrics, and if not, than I want to allow administrators to be able to use their subjective judgement. What the unions seem to be doing now is this back and forth between "Administrators aren't subjective, there is to much politics" and "Standardized tests are too objective, they don't account for the subjective nature of teaching".

jesseewiak wrote:The obligatory admission is that yes, of course there are bad teachers. But, there are bad people in every profession. We shouldn't remove tenure and benefits from a profession just because there are bad people in that profession.
Yes, there a bad people in every profession, but those professions usually don't have tenure.

Heisenberg wrote:
Kain wrote:Teachers need protection from over-zealous bosses and ideological politicians.

Why? I don't have this. Why are teachers special? Are their bosses really really bad people? Because I have a solution for that problem

Yeah, thats called office politics. And although I can see some reason to isolate teachers from politicians, I don't see any for isolating them from school administrators.

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Re: Wisconsin Governor battles Unions over budget. Dem Sens

Postby Lucrece » Mon Mar 07, 2011 10:48 pm UTC

Tenure is there to protect the professor's ability to teach content that could be considered controversial in other places. Academia has a long, ugly history of reprisal against individuals with unpopular but ultimately vindicated ideas. Tenure's scope just needs to be reduced so it doesn't serve as an immunity shield for professors who think it gives them an ability to be unmitigated dicks.
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