Thursday, February 24, 2011

Greedy Teachers in Providence Staring at Wisconsin Teachers Fate

On the same day that Rhode Island teachers and public service union employees were rallying in support of teachers in Wisconsin, the city of Providence was finalizing plans to fire all of it's teachers.

Providence plans to pink slip all teachers
The school district plans to send out dismissal notices to every one of its 1,926 teachers, an unprecedented move that has union leaders up in arms.
 How ironic is that? Poetic justice perhaps?
“This is beyond insane,” Providence Teachers Union President Steve Smith said Tuesday night. “Let’s create the most chaos and the highest level of anxiety in a district where teachers are already under unbelievable stress. Now I know how the United States State Department felt on Dec. 7 , 1941.” That was the day the Japanese government bombed Pearl Harbor.
As Michael Graham points out on his blog 'The Natural Truth', it was good and appropriate that the Providence Journal pointed out that Dec. 7, 1941 was the day that the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor since most of their readers were probably educated by Smith’s public school colleagues and would have no idea what that date meant.
Taveras, in a statement issued Tuesday night, said the uncertainty around the city’s finances, combined with the March 1 deadline, led to this decision.
State law requires that teachers be notified about potential changes to their employment status by March 1. 
Hmmmm... I wonder why there is a state law which requires that teachers be notified about potential changes to their employment status by March 1? I am going to go out on a limb here and wildly speculate that this was a law supported by the teachers union in an effort to limit the states ability to downsize the teaching workforce. File this one under the law of unintended consequences. Since the state is obliged to follow a law that the union wanted the union is accordingly up in arms.
He (Steve Smith) said it makes no sense to send out dismissal notices to every teacher because the district has a legal obligation to educate all of its students, regardless of budget considerations. “You have so many students,” he said. “You need so many teachers. You have a student-teacher ratio of 26 to 1. Do the math.”
 Ha! Do the Math. Classic! Sorry Steve, but if they were educated in Providence then they probably can't.

The Mayor of Providence Angel Tavares in that same statement from Tuesday night said;
“As a Providence public school graduate, I understand how great teachers can change lives,”

Let this be a lesson in cause and effect.
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