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QOTD: Teacher Unions Against Teachers July 10, 2010

Posted by federalist in Education, Unions.
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From a review of Teach For America (TFA), a non-profit organization that pays for thousands of top college graduates to teach for two years in poorly-performing public schools:

Oddly, [one] obstacle is finding districts that will take the teachers. Why wouldn’t any superintendent trip over himself to hire young people with these qualifications?

The answer lies in the opposition to TFA by teachers unions and education schools. If TFA corps members can do a better job in two years than many longtime veterans, what do public-school systems need with job protections like tenure? And if they can do it without education school courses, why do we need those institutions?

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1. federalist - January 9, 2011

From an NBER paper:

[R]eplacing the bottom 5-8 percent of teachers with average teachers could move the U.S. near the top of international math and science rankings with a present value of $100 trillion.

2. federalist - February 3, 2011

Unions have successfully maintained contracts ensuring that when layoffs occur the most expensive teachers are protected:

If the unions have their way, the most recently hired will be fired first regardless of performance. That’s the way most union contracts work, with seniority trumping talent or merit. That means some of the worst teachers will be retained while young, energetic teachers hired in recent years will have to go, even if the latter are highly regarded by school principals.

Fortunately even liberal governors are finally trying to fight back.


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