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, October 31, 2011

A Challenge For Every NJ Newspaper:

So many of you are convinced that firing our way to better teachers is absolutely necessary. You even claim it will close the income gap (oh, Tom, I really am trying to be civil, but you make it so hard when you won't even attempt to answer my points). OK...

With whom will you replace these fired teachers?

Who is all teed up and ready to hit the ground running in these schools? Who's ready to go in and save our youth? Teach for America? You mean, the college grads who treat teaching like the Peace Corps - in for a couple of years before moving on to their "real" jobs?

Here's a thought: send some reporters out to some NJ colleges and see what the undergrads think about "reform." See if they are jazzed to go work in schools now that we've cut pay, benefits, and prestige. See if the best and the brightest are ready to go into Camden and Trenton and Newark under a testing regime that will evaluate them as well as rolling dice.

Until you convince me that there are plenty of competent teachers standing by, waiting to jump in and erase income inequity, I really don't want to hear your fantasies about firing teachers as our way out of the recession. And I especially don't want to hear you claim the governor can't do much else, even while he continues to give huge tax breaks to the wealthy and corporations.

Deal with that before you start complaining about all of these allegedly "bad" teachers - especially since you can't even tell us how many there are or how you will replace them.

No comments: