Weingarten Lies on Tenure
Is it possible that Randi Weingarten is the biggest phoney in NYC politics? That would be a tough feat, considering some of the real lunatics we have in NYC, but I think she may just win the award.
The issue of teacher tenure has been one often discussed as a major problem preventing our children from getting a good education as well as a budget problem driving the cost of the system higher every year. And, of course, any attempt to reform tenure has been met with a harsh response from Randi.
In the past, her argument, and the argument of all the defenders of tenure, has been that tenure protects teachers from the whims of politicians or administrators who may have ideological or political differences with certain things a teacher is saying in class. So the defense goes, this allows for a better education because it protects all viewpoints in the classroom.
Of course, any remotely aware person realizes that this may be an issue at the college level, but is rarely an issue in gradeschool, where the challenge is to teach basic skills and not advanced political ideas.
There is a second agrgument, that tenure protects teachers from repurcussions for political activity outside the classroom. However, in a systme with 80,000 teachers and over 300,000 total public employees (and up to 8 million potential voters), any politician who has the time to worry about what a single teacher is doing on their free time is not doing their job. Besides, the press would have a field day over any city employee fired for political reasons.
These arguments just don't hold water any longer. The public knows it, the politicians know it, and now it seems even Randi Weingarten knows it. Because she has an entirely new defense of tenure that boggled my mind.
On NY1 earlier this week she made the claim, responding to Bloomberg's desire to rid the city of this festering impediment to the firing of teachers who break the rules, or even the law, that tenure is necessary to protect teachers who go out of their way to give extra help to students.
Huh? If you don't understand that, neither did I. But never mind the validity of her argument for now, what I want to know is where did it come from. What happened to the traditional defense of teachers political views?
Has she really given up on the excuse they have been relying on for decades for this dysfunctional system? If so, if Randi and her spinmeisters have really come up with something entirely new to excuse this abberation, how are we to believe that it will not be abondoned for another equally lame excuse as soon as this one is debunked?
It seems clear the time has finally come to hold teachers accountable for their performance. Good teachers, and there are many, should be rewarded, mediocre teachers should be helped and poor teachers should be fired. The public finally gets it, some politicians are finally getting it, and soon Randi and her merry band of union organizers (historically known as thugs) will get it too.
Post new comment