Gee, you’d think that they’d want to spend time doing their job rather than protesting because their perks are being threatened:
Two school districts have declared “professional development” days Thursday that will allow teachers to travel to Baton Rouge for hearings on Gov. Bobby Jindal’s plan to make sweeping changes in public schools, officials said Monday.
Boards that oversee the St. Martin and Vermilion school districts authorized the days, superintendents said.
Leaders of the state’s two largest teacher unions, who oppose most of the governor’s plan, say they expect significant turnouts this week, primarily to protest the possibility of fast action on bills that they say are seriously flawed.
Oh, and they’ll be paid for protesting.
Teachers typically collect their normal pay for professional development.
What are the changes? Governor Jindal’s office has the press release of his speech, but the main points are that automatic tenure and pay raises are going away, and teachers will have to prove that they can do their job in order to keep their job. However, the money saved by not giving pay raises to substandard teachers can, Jindal says, be used to pay exceptional teachers better. So, the better you are at your job, the better you’ll be paid — kind of like most other kinds of jobs.
Also, Jindal’s plan expands school choice and gives parents new tools to help change their schools, and requires that school superintendent contracts be reviewed by a state agency.
All of this seems a pretty good way to solve the many problems in education, including poor teachers, overpaid administrators, and parents being powerless to fix failing schools.
Of course, public employee unions are up in arms about it, because they’re more interested in protecting their own turf than actually educating students. In fact, if they really were about educating students, Jindal’s reforms probably wouldn’t be needed. The fact that they can get paid for a day of protesting just indicates how necessary reform is.