Getting Rid Of Bad Teachers

More

ROTTENAPPLEJoeKlamar:Getty

Yglesias hopes it's going to get easier:

Good news: “Responding to criticism that tenure gives even poor teachers a job for life, Randi Weingarten, the president of the American Federation of Teachers, announced a plan Thursday to overhaul how teachers are evaluated and dismissed. It would give tenured teachers who are rated unsatisfactory by their principals a maximum of one school year to improve. If they did not, they could be fired within 100 days.”

Okay. Now do this thought experiment and try and simulate it in a private sector context. Say there's a teacher who is cited by his principal in February for dismal performance. If he's still a terrible teacher in April, no problem. Come May, he needn't have improved. In June, he can send his underprepared students on to the next grade, enjoy his summer vacation, and return in September to a new class, educating them poorly too. In fact, those kids will keep falling behind in October, November, December and January. Finally, February rolls around again. A year later, the teacher hasn't improved a bit. Can he be fired?

No, the principal then must wait 100 days. And that's the concession. My own view is that if unions did less protection of mediocrity and more protection of wages and benefits, their general image would improve drastically. But they cannot expect to continue their bad old ways and win public support in recessionary America.

Jump to comments

2006-2011 archives for The Daily Dish, featuring Andrew Sullivan

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

CrossFit Versus Yoga: Choose a Side

How a workout becomes a social identity


Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

CrossFit Versus Yoga: Choose a Side

How a workout becomes a social identity

Video

Is Technology Making Us Better Storytellers?

The minds behind House of Cards and The Moth weigh in.

Video

A Short Film That Skewers Hollywood

A studio executive concocts an animated blockbuster. Who cares about the story?

Video

In Online Dating, Everyone's a Little Bit Racist

The co-founder of OKCupid shares findings from his analysis of millions of users' data.

Video

What Is a Sandwich?

We're overthinking sandwiches, so you don't have to.

Video

Let's Talk About Not Smoking

Why does smoking maintain its allure? James Hamblin seeks the wisdom of a cool person.

Writers

Up
Down