Thursday, May 05, 2005

Another flawed initiative

Why have we heard little about the Governor’s “Merit Pay” initiative?
According to Sacramento Bee on line web log of today by columnist Dan Weintraub, the Governor’s advisors may have stumbled again.

“The labor coalition opposing his measures and the California Teachers Assn. are circulating a legal analysis that says Schwarzenegger’s measure would inadvertently gut current provisions that prohibit school districts from hiring convicted felons, sex offenders, drug users or teachers who have yet to pass a minimum competency exam.’ (5/5/05)

The Merit Pay proposal is a constitutional amendment. As such it supercedes existing laws.
CTA says the initiative is unecessary:
“Existing law already gives every local school district an evaluation process to use to fire teachers for unsatisfactory performance, unprofessional conduct, dishonesty, criminal acts or other inappropriate conduct. Therefore, this initiative is unnecessary.”

So, in his haste to respond to the far right, the governor has again proposed an initiative that would make things worse.
Why does he do these things?

Well, CTA seems to have it right when they argue:

“This initiative is simply a smokescreen to divert attention from the fact that the governor broke his promise to students and schools about fully funding education and that he wants to gut Proposition 98, the law approved by California voters to guarantee minimum funding to our schools. His budget proposals cut school funding by $25,000 per classroom.”

WE in California then will have an election, costing some $60 million dollars, in order to divert attention from the real school crises in this state; under funding and lack of leadership.

This blog was initiated to keep track of such nonsense and to help organize broad support for public schools. Public support is most needed under this current, irresponsible administration. I encourage readers to write letters to the editors about this and to join in with one of the campaigns. Comments are welcome.

Prepare for the demonstrations in Sacramento and Los Angeles on May 25, 2005.
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