The Jefferson Parish Public School System is benefiting from a remarkable initiative for accountability and reform within the school district.
Teacher union challenges to real education reform continue to exist, though often in ways that are not measurable or reportable. If you dig deeper, the unions’ power and influence, particularly at the local school district level, remain strong in this state, challenging education reform efforts at every step of the electoral, legislative and policy implementation processes.
Thousands of school voucher applicants who want to exit unsafe, ineffective public schools made history on Friday. That was the deadline for eligible families to apply for scholarship funds that can be used to cover the cost of private school tuition.
As an alternative to the “draconian Jindal approach” to education reform, the state’s teachers unions have offered up legislation that would revoke value-added teacher assessments, reinstate tenure and empower school boards over superintendents.
Test scores that measure the progress students make each year will now be used as part of a new evaluation system that determines how effective teachers are in the classroom. But not everyone with a stake in the public education system is pleased with the change.
Rep. Tony Ligi made every effort to pass legislation that would allow for greater public scrutiny of collective bargaining agreements between union officials and government agencies. His efforts fell short this time around but they have attracted national attention and will be revisited in Louisiana.
Rep. Toni Ligi’s attempt to bring greater openness and transparency to the collective bargaining process will have to wait at least one more year. His bill failed in a House committee by just one vote.
Public sector unions are boosting taxpayer costs in Louisiana just as they are in other states. The demonstrations in Wisconsin, New Jersey and Ohio relate back to a fundamental change in the composition of organized labor. For the first time in American history, more union workers are employed by the government than the private sector.
“The LTF is insinuating that [HB 1368] will allow BESE to make arbitrary policy decisions against the schools’ wills. This is blatantly untrue.