Thursday, March 19, 2009

Does DC Union Want It To Take Longer Than Forever to Fire Teachers?

Andy Rotherham and Richard Whitmire have an article in The New Republic on AFT President Randi Weingarten. In it, they divulge some details about the counter-offer of the teachers' union in DC contract negotiations. It seems that the union, as things stand, wants to make the firing of teachers more complex and protracted than it already is:
...[T]he counter-offer, which hasn't been made public, would complicate rather than streamline [the teacher-firing] process in D.C. ... [It wraps] teachers even more tightly in tenure protections and extend[s] the termination process....If adopted as currently proposed, [DC schools chancellor Michelle] Rhee's hurry-up reforms would be throttled back to a glacial pace and students would suffer.
Rotherham and Whitmire point that some people contend that, in the mirror-world of labor negotiations, this complexifying proposal is "actually a signal from Weingarten that she's open to negotiating and moving in Rhee's direction."

We'll see.

UPDATE (3/22/09) D.C Wire had a blog post on Michelle Rhee's reaction to the union's counter-proposal -- the counter-proposal that I discussed above. Rhee reported to the DC Council: "There are some fundamental issues we can't come to agreement on....Both sides are drawing a line in the sand."

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