11:12 AM, Jan 17, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
Campbell Brown, writing in the Wall Street Journal:
When a Michigan middle-school teacher was denied $10,000 in severance pay last month, the local teachers union filed a grievance against the school board on his behalf. Given the union's mission to defend the rights of educators, this would appear to be routine. Not so fast: The teacher is a convicted sex offender.
Neal Erickson was sentenced in July to a 15- to 30-year jail term after acknowledging that he had sexual relations with a male student beginning when the boy was 14 years old. The school board denied him severance once he was charged. But the local chapter of the National Education Association thinks this criminal deserves his severance, which says a lot about the mindset of teachers unions, which are also trying to weaken a bipartisan bill in Washington that would help keep sexual predators out of schools.
The Erickson case isn't unique. In August, a Maryland music teacher was arrested on child-pornography charges. Authorities subsequently discovered that his stash of 4,000 images included sexually suggestive photos and videos of 14 female students between kindergarten and second-grade ages. When the case became news, a woman who had been his student during the 1990s came forward and the teacher now faces additional charges of sex abuse and rape.
One former colleague told reporters that she had twice reported his suspicious activity, including locking his classroom doors when he was alone with young girls. But nothing happened because "the administrators didn't take it seriously enough," she said.
Horror stories like these are relatively rare, and parents know from experience that the overwhelming majority of teachers are resolutely protective of their students. Still, decades of research shows that states and districts could do much more to protect students from the minority of teachers who are abusive.
Whole thing here.
10:35 AM, Jul 11, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
WTHI reports that local Indiana schools will be able to keep employees because of the employer mandate delay:
"A lot of politics in today's education, but for a now, at least, a delay in Obamacare will allow teacher's aides more time in Vego county classrooms," the local news outlet reports.
1:04 PM, Jan 29, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
A press release from gun-rights group Rocky Mountain Gun Owners announces that last night it gave a firearms class to 300 teachers in Colorado. There was no cost for admission.
The GOP shouldn’t write off educators.Jan 21, 2013, Vol. 18, No. 18 • By COLLEEN HYLAND
As Republicans discuss the future of the party, abandoning conservative values need not be part of the conversation. The party can appeal to larger segments of the electorate without forsaking core principles. One case in point is a group the party has long written off: public school teachers.
9:49 AM, Sep 11, 2012 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
The strike by Chicago teachers continues. It is a hardship for parents and one more tough break for the students in Chicago's public schools, some 40 percent of whom drop out before graduating high school. Equally unfortunate are the 20 percent who do graduate but are still functionally illiterate. But the strike is also an opportunity for some, including Mayor Rahm Emmanuel who famously said that, in politics, you never want to let a good crisis go to waste.
11:40 AM, Sep 10, 2012 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
The public school teachers are going on strike in Chicago and the first worry of the people who run the city is for the safety of the children—where violence is already sky-high. The political class in Chicago has already failed in its duty to provide for the public safety. Failing to keep the schools open and the teachers happy, is a lesser offense. The strike will be settled and the teachers' union will get more than it deserves but less than it wants while insisting that this is all about the children.
An education agenda for Mitt Romney.Jun 11, 2012, Vol. 17, No. 37 • By FREDERICK M. HESS AND ANDREW P. KELLY
The Republican presidential candidates have spent the past year saying little about education. When they have addressed the issue, it has often been in terse calls to “turn off the lights” at the U.S. Department of Education.
11:45 AM, Aug 8, 2011 • By JOY PULLMANN
Recently, Education Secretary Arne Duncan no doubt thought it radical to say that teachers should get a $60,000 yearly starting salary and top out around $150,000. He’s hoping this could shift teaching from attracting undergraduates at the middle or low ends of their classes, as it does now, to attracting high-performers who are evaluated, pushed, and paid accordingly.
5:03 PM, Jul 6, 2011 • By JOY PULLMAN
Test cheating has for years provided ammunition for critics of public school accountability, and the latest out of Atlanta on the country's apparently largest test-cooking scandal to date only amplifies their crows. As Mark mentioned earlier, that's the quick conclusion even "objective" reporters are highlighting. A sampling from some star-studded outlets.