Reclaiming the Promise of Public Education
For the past few years, the debate about public education has been a one-way conversation, with a lot of negative comments and unfortunate policies aimed at teachers and our schools.
Teachers’ careers have been upended by a chaotic series of top down “reforms” for which they have been poorly prepared. Our students have been subjected to barrages of new regimens that stress testing more than learning. Our public schools have been labeled with letter grades that all too often dismiss the hard work by teachers and outstanding efforts by students, while decision-makers have funneled tax dollars to schools exempt from labels.
Public education has been seen as a vineyard ripe for the picking by hedge fund managers and small time hucksters alike. Louisiana teachers even had to go to court to save minimum funding for our schools.
It shouldn’t be this way! Our schools are too important to our communities to be treated like cash machines for profiteers. And in fact, some positive steps were taken in the last legislative session to restore the public in public education (click here to read the Louisiana Federation of Teachers’ 2013 Legislative Report).
We can turn our attention from destructive policies and refocus on the importance of an excellent public education for all. Please click on the link below and help the Louisiana Federation of Teachers explain to our leaders what reclaiming the promise of public education means:
It’s time to reclaim the promise of public education—not as it is today or as it was in the past, but as we imagine it for our children—to fulfill our collective obligation to help all children succeed.
Reclaiming the promise is about fighting for community public schools that are safe, welcoming places for teaching and learning.
Reclaiming the promise is about ensuring that teachers are well-prepared, are supported and have time to collaborate so they can meet the individual needs of every child.
Reclaiming the promise is about making sure our children have an engaging curriculum that includes art, music, the sciences, and, yes, even recognizing that children still need and deserve time to play.
Reclaiming the promise is about ensuring that children have access to wraparound services to meet their emotional, social and health needs.
Please send this message to your Senator, your Representative and the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education, asking to make this promise real for all our children.
Delay full implementation of COMPASS
Tell the Senate Education Committee to delay full implementation of COMPASS!
It's just wrong to judge teacher performance based on an inaccurate and unfair evaluation scheme.
The Senate Education will hear HB160 by Rep. Gene Reynolds on Thursday, May 30. This great bill would delay the full implementation of the COMPASS evaluations system through the end of the 2013-2014 school year.
The Department of Education failed to provide all of the information and training that teachers need for a meaningful COMPASS evaluation. This delay would allow for further review of the data to ensure accuracy and fairness. It would prevent the flawed system from unfairly affecting your compensation, your assignment, or ultimately your livelihood based on the unscientific, inaccurate results of COMPASS.
The bill must be approved by the Senate Education before it can be voted on by the full senate and signed by the Governor. Send a message to the Committee Members now, asking to delay the full implementation of COMPASS evaluations!
Please click the link and tell members of the Senate Education Committee to approve HB 160!
A profile in courage
Please thank a lawmaker who stood tall for us!
Thanks in large part to the e-mails that you sent to the House Labor and Industrial Relations Committee this week, we were able to convince members to defer HB 522, which would have repealed our right to collect member dues through payroll deduction.
Had this bill passed, unions like the LFT would find it very difficult to continue our fight against the Jindal administration’s efforts to substitute a corporate agenda for the common good of the people of Louisiana.
On issues including school vouchers, assaults on the teaching profession, privatization of health care and the reduction of health services, attacks on public employee pensions, starving higher education and more, unions have led the opposition to the Jindal agenda.
With the defeat of HB 552, we will be able to keep fighting.
We owe particular thanks to one member of the committee, Rep. Jerome “Dee” Richard (I-Thibodaux). In spite of heavy pressure from the business lobby, Rep. Richard listened to his conscience and cast the deciding vote to kill HB 552.
Rep. Richard is now being blanketed with hate mail because of the stand he took. Please take a moment and thank Rep. Richard. Click the link below. Let him know that we appreciate his courage, and will support him in any way that we can.