I will protect your pensions. Nothing about your pension is going to change when I am governor. - Chris Christie, "An Open Letter to the Teachers of NJ" October, 2009

Monday, July 12, 2010

No One Could Have Predicted...

(Got to stop stealing Atrios's headlines...)

This is just shocking, I know:
In addition to the traditional reading, 'riting and 'rithmetic, there is a wave of retirement, with public school teachers retiring this year at nearly double the rate of recent years.
This month, according to the state Department of Treasury's Division of Pensions and Benefits, retirement applications have been filed by 5,444 teachers.
Last July the division received 2,203 applications. In 2008 it received 2,731 in July. In 2007 it received 3,168 in July, the month which traditionally has the largest number of filings.
Gosh, who would have thought that having a governor running around the state comparing teachers to greedy drug dealers would have brought this on?
“The public-sector unions need to become part of the shared sacrifice and they're refusing to,” Christie said.
Immediately afterward, look at the long list of layoffs. I guess that's not sacrifice.

Of course, Christie kept telling teachers that all they had to do was take a freeze and pay 1.5% toward their health care and layoffs and program cuts could be avoided. Even though the OLS said a freeze and 1.5% would only cover about 1/4 of the cut in state aid. I guess teachers are maybe pretty good at math?

My prediction: give it less than five years. You're scaring off the veterans, and the college kids who were considering the profession are certainly rethinking their options.

By then, the teaching corps will have been decimated, and districts will be scrambling to fill slots, but Christie will be long gone. Sound familiar?

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