Friday, August 29, 2014

Rheeformers & the Vergara ruling against teacher tenure

Edd Doerr ( notes that the Washington Post, 15 Aug 2014, ran a long op ed piece, “The promise of teacher tenure reform”, by Joshua Lewis, a long time “Rheeformer”  supporting the recent LA lower court ruling in the Vergara case that slashed teacher tenure.

 Below is the comment Edd posted in the Post on line. A similarly strong response was posted by “LaborLawyer”. 

Of course Lewis would like the Vergara ruling against teacher tenure. He is on the board of Pearson, the testing and publishing supergiant that makes uncounted millions from its contracts with public schools and which owns some charter schools, which are not friendly to teacher unions. Lewis talks big about "reform" but says nothing about the overtesting of kids that is actually hurting public education and kids. And he says nothing about the real reforms that serious professional educators have been advocating, such as more adequate and more equitably distributed funding for public schools, universal pre-K, smaller classes, wraparound social and medical services for the neediest kids, an end to the diversion of public funds to special interest private schools through vouchers and tax credits (which have invariably been voted down in state referenda), and a pull-back in the expansion of charter schools, which the 2013 Stanford CREDO study found were generally no better than regular public schools despite their selectivity and other advantages.

Doing away with teacher tenure can only harm the teaching profession and the kids. The idea that the quality of in-school teaching is all important ignores the fact that kids are not widgets in a factory, that teachers are not robots on an assembly line, and that at least 1/4 of our students live in poverty.

The Post should run opinion pieces by real educators -- like Diane Ravitch, Mercedes Schneider or David Berliner.

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