To the People

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or TO THE PEOPLE.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

New DC Schools Head Boldly Goes Where No Man Has Gone Before: Ending Lifetime Union Employment

In urban school districts, liberal activists espouse two contradictory policies. They believe that schools should educate their students well, yet they also endorse the position that no school employee can ever be fired as they support the teachers' union.

New DC schools Chancellor Rhee wants to change the terms of the debate, and kudos to her.
As the initial piece of her strategy, Rhee has begun drafting legislation that would ask the D.C. Council to suspend personnel laws so that the chancellor would have the authority to terminate employees without having to reassign them to other jobs.
But the DC Council that was all over school reform in the election is already showing signs of cowering to union pressure. Member Harry Thomas of Ward 5, whose schools are the worst in the nation, is continuing to advocate the government as the employer of last resort. Of his coversation with Rhee:
We talked about labor union roles. I want to ask her about issues of [the] rights of employees who are fired. Where would they go? What would they do?
How does anyone who is not on a 30 year, cannot-get-fired, pension and health insurance gravy train answer that question? I don't know. Most of us expect that if we don't perform we will be fired, many of us have been fired, including me, and we lived to see another day. Most private sector employees have switched jobs six or seven times and we somehow survive. If the teachers that the DCPS are employing are so unemployable that Thomas has to worry about them then that gets right back to Rhee's smart demand to be able to fire them.

Labels: , ,