"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Teachers Need to Finish the Job in DC: Put George Parker on the Same Rail with Michelle Rhee

From the WTU website:
Washington Teachers’ Union
Important Run-Off Election Information
The WTU is conducting a run-off election to determine the officers and members of the Executive Board. No candidate (with the exception of treasurer) received a majority of votes in the first round of voting.
Please click here to review a sample ballot of the candidates for office.
Ballots for the run-off election are being mailed to WTU members on Nov. 15, 2010.
Your ballot must be placed in the reply envelope and mailed so that it is received no later than 4 p.m., on TUESDAY, NOV. 30, 2010.
IF YOU NEED A DUPLICATE BALLOT for any of the following reasons:
• you have not received a ballot by Nov. 19, 2010;
• the ballot package you received is incomplete; or
• your ballot has been lost, damaged or spoiled;
Please call Maria Landi, American Arbitration Association, at 800/273-0726. If you call after hours, you may leave a message with your address and a ballot will be sent to you.

Questions about the WTU elections?
Contact Al Squire, WTU administrator
202/393-5673 • asquire@aft.org

The voters have done their part in DC by voting out Fenty/Rhee.  Now it is the teachers' turn to finish the job. 

George Parker was able to elbow his way to the corporate welfare feeding trough when he acquiesced to IMPACT, the pay-for-test-score evaluation scheme put together for Rhee by the Broadies and the Waltons, along with prostisuits from the AFT who have turned their backs on DC teachers and the students who need teachers who teach, rather than test. 

Parker's ethically-challenged history of bowing to the corporate foundations should be swept out of DC Schools with the Fenty-Rhee clan, and new blood should be brought in to quash the unworkable and morally-bankrupt evaluation scheme that has no scientific basis and no educational value. 

Send a message to the new Mayor that education is the goal in DC Schools, not more test and punish by the Billionaire Boys' Club.

You have a choice in DC.  Clips from Turque's WaPo story:
Michelle A. Rhee is no longer chancellor of D.C. schools, but her presence still looms large over a Washington Teachers' Union election that is entering its final contentious days.

Incumbent President George Parker faces a stiff reelection challenge from Nathan Saunders, the union's general vice president, who contends that Parker was too pliant in his dealings with Rhee. He cites the collective bargaining agreement Parker negotiated with Rhee, one that weakens traditional seniority and other job protections for teachers. Union members approved the contract in June.

Saunders also pledges to pursue legal, legislative and lobbying efforts to undo Rhee's signature initiative, the new IMPACT evaluation system that links some teacher appraisals to student test scores and can trigger dismissals for educators who don't meet certain classroom performance criteria.

"I know what it takes to be the leader of a labor union," said Saunders. "We've had too much strength by the chancellor and not enough strength by the union and the community."

Should Parker lose when mail ballots are counted on Tuesday, he would join Rhee and Mayor Adrian M. Fenty as the third major figure in the 2007-10 school reform movement to leave office this year.
. . . .
But getting rid of it[ IMPACT), Parker said, is not an option.

"You look at where the country is going, and we have to get in front of a document like IMPACT and make it a fair document," he said.

Have your votes counted on Tuesday, DC teachers.  Parents, children, and other teachers around the country are counting on you. 

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