Charlie Crist Vetoes Tenure Bill

(Guest Post by Matthew Ladner)

Florida Governor Crist vetoed a tenure reform bill despite the fact that he endorsed it publicly on multiple occasions.

22 Responses to Charlie Crist Vetoes Tenure Bill

  1. MOMwithAbrain says:

    He’s a waste anyway..but this is one time I agree with the flip flop.
    This is a local decision. Maybe the School Board needs to grow a spine and end tenure. Maybe the parents need to pressure the school board and stop looking to the Govt to fix every problem.

    I also disagree with holding teacher’s accountable for the test scores the students receive.

  2. matthewladner says:

    Holding teachers accountable for test score gains is complex, but holding teachers accountable for student learning gains is essential if we are going to transform teaching into an actual profession. Professionals are rewarded for success and held accountable for failure.

  3. mhj says:

    Bottom line is Charlie’s legacy just went from being the squishy moderate who got trounced by Rubio in the primary to be a Senator (thus ending his political career), to being the squishy moderate whose last significant act in state politics put him squarely in the camp of adult employee interests over the needs of kids stuck with ineffective teachers.

  4. Slap Down says:

    I’ve always considerend Charlie to be a lightweight, but he just landed a knock-out blow to heavyweights Jeb Bush and the Florida Chamber of Commerce. Whine all you want, but from where I stand, I see you on your kiesters and Charlie standing over you with gloves raised in the air. Char-lie! Char-lie! Charl-lie!

  5. Greg Forster says:

    If so, he should enjoy the feeling while it lasts, given what’s coming.

  6. Slap Down says:

    Greg- you mean his election to the Senate as an independent? 😉 Charlie! Charlie! charlie!

  7. matthewladner says:

    Slap Down-

    No need to whine. We’ll just pick ourselves off the mat and get back about the business of putting unconditional tenure where it deserves to be- in the dustbin of shameful public school practices, right next to racial segregation and denying admission to children with disabilities.

  8. Slap Down says:

    There is no such thing as tenure in Florida, and there’s definitely no such thing as “unconditional tenure,” whatever you mean by that made-up phrase.

    The only shameful thing is trying to do away with a teacher’s basic due process rights, and dishonestly portraying both those rights and your own actions.

    By the way, racial segregation and denying admission to children with disabilities would be practices dictated by lawmakers- policy with evil intent, just like SB6. Both practices are still alive around the country in both charter schools and private schools that take public money through vouchers.

  9. mhj says:

    Charlie definitely voted against what a majority of Floridians are more than comfortable with doing via reforming the teaching profession and he voted in favor of what a vocal MINORITY of public sector employees in the state (i.e. a special interest) wanted. The polling data are there – a majority of Floridians support more teacher accountability, pay tied to performance, and tenure to be based on real metrics of improvement not just breathing another day.

    At some point government will have to remember that public schools are PUBLIC and ought to have policies in place that reflect the will of the majority of citizens who fund them, not employees in the system.

    Small d democracy anyone?

  10. Randy says:

    Yeah, I’ve heard that “there is no such thing as tenure in X state” quite a lot. You don’t have to call it tenure, but we know what it is… By do basic due process rights you mean, “you can’t fire me for ruining the lives of the children under my care.” No one should be protected from their own incompetence.

    PS, you should read Dr. Greene’s book, Education Myths. You might learn that private schools are actually more racially diverse on average than public schools.

  11. Slap Down says:

    Randy, if I give you the benefit of the doubt that you are not intentionally lying, then you are completely ignorant of what due process is. There is no such thing as “you can’t fire me.”

    That flies in the face of reality. If that were true, then why do 1/3 of teachers leave by their third year, and 1/2 by their fifth year? If they have this job where, according to you, even active malpractice by a teacher cannot result in termination, then why are so many teachers leaving? You can’t have it both ways. Either there is a huge turnover in the teaching profession or teachers have such incredible job security that even incompetent teachers cannot be fired. I mean, really, those are not compatible situations, and considering that one is verifiable fact, then the other must be bunk.

    And no, I don’t make a practice of reading Greene’s propaganda. Perhaps you should read a few books by the late, great Gerald Bracey?

    • Randy says:

      The type of due process tenure affords teachers is NOT the same due process natural rights afford American citizens. Due process for teacher tenure IS the nice way of saying “you can’t fire me unless I molest a child, and even then, good luck suckas!”

      You rush to conclusions before analyzing available possibilities. Thus, what you think is bunk may not be bunk at all. Are those teachers leaving by their third year because they are being fired? Or because they were became jaded or depressed about the situation? Maybe they quit because they don’t want to wait 10 years to be paid what their worth? (what kind of young high-skilled individual wants to get paid less than the tired old fart in Homeroom 1b?)

      I bet these teachers aren’t leaving because they’re being fired. Basically what I’m saying is: lots of people quitting a job can make a job have high turnover, but this type of high turnover does NOT mean a lack of job security.

  12. Slap Down says:

    MHJ, what polling data? What, you didn’t have five seconds to google it? Show us a link.

  13. Slap Down says:

    URL for the WaPo article about turnover in the teaching profession.

    • Patrick says:

      Working conditions bad (thanks teacher unions and central bureaucracies) teacher salaries low (thanks union negotiated age related pay scale).

      Neither of those two have anything to do with being fired for poor performance you seem to have missed the above point altogether.

  14. mhj says:

    your wish answered pal.

    and i could pretty much cite every phi delta kappan poll ever done in the last 10 years when a question about tenure, accountability, and evaluation are asked the public is strongly supportive of reforms that the teacher unions oppose on those fronts.

  15. Slap Down says:

    Randy, your response is just absurd. What the heck is “due process natural rights?” You’re good at making up stuff. Actually, it’s insulting that you’re insinuating that I’m so stupid that I won’t notice you’re making it up.

    Randy, your portrayal of teacher due process is one of two things- either you know it’s pure bunk and you’re lying, or you are absolutely ignorant about what it means. I think clearly the latter is true. Still, there is no excuse for being wilfully ignorant.

    I have seen one principal alone fire at least two teachers who had “tenure.” All the principal had to do is follow due process and there was nothing those two teachers could do. I actually know what I’m talking about because I saw it first hand, as opposed to talking out of my a** like you are.

    Most teachers who are started on the process to dismissal simply resign rather than be fired. They don’t show up in the stats as being fired. This happens on a regular basis. But most teachers that can’t hack it weed themselves out by resigning, whether they have “tenure” or not, so there aren’t a lot who have to be dismissed. That’s the reality from someone who actually has a clue.

    All those teachers leave for a variety of reasons, but it puts the lie to your assertion that they have complete job security guaranteed by “tenure.” What kind of insane person would leave a job where after the third year, they could put up their feet, do nothing, and still have a guaranteed job? No one would do that. If that were true, most of the population would be pounding at the school door begging to become a teacher. The turnover proves that such job security doesn’t exist.

  16. Slap Down says:

    mhj- Are you SERIOUS? You give me two links citing the same biased poll by a right-wing organization and what? I’m supposed to slink off with my tail between my legs? LAME, LAME, LAME!

    Two can play that game. Check out this poll proving the opposite of your poll:

    Well, that settles it, right? 😉

  17. mhj says:

    That’s weak man. An NEA commissioned poll? They didn’t even go to an academic polling organization to get the work done. You call the poll I cite right wing but do you even know that the academic researches who conducted the poll, Howell and West are at Harvard and Chicago, respectively. I’m sorry but I will go with Harvard University and University of Chicago any day in the intellectual world of scientific research over what is ostensibly a push poll by the NEA. Did you even read the question wording of that NEA poll:

    “We should change the system to end annual reviews of teacher performance and allow principals to fire a teacher without providing a reason or offering an appeals process”

    That is about as loaded and biased of a way to ask the question on HB6 as one could hope for. Clearly the Florida NEA went out and asked a question from a marketing (NOT AN ACADEMIC POLLING FIRM) in a way that would get them the response they wanted. Go read a book about academic survey research and then come back to me before citing a crap poll like that. That poll would never be published in a peer reviewed journal. Call the PEPG/EdNext poll right wing if you want but the facts are that it was a huge N, a 3 year poll that has been done year after year and done by REPUTABLE academics at the nation’s top institutions of higher education. Oh yeah, and they didn’t “frame” the question in a way so obviously biased that of course Republicans answered the way they did “firing teachers without any reason.” HB 6 would have done a lot of things but “without any reason” is hardly reflective of what the point of getting rid of tenure for new teachers was proposed for. Yeah, that’s right Florida NEA let’s go ask people if we should fire teachers for any reason and see how many say no. While we are at it let’s ask Floridians if we should dump oil into the Everglades for kicks. Shocking! People say no.

    Seriously, that is weak sauce. That poll is worthless. PEPG = Harvard and Chicago. NEA hires some hack firm and you wan’t to equate the two. Child please.

  18. “We should change the system to end annual reviews of teacher performance and allow principals to fire a teacher without providing a reason or offering an appeals process.”

    Add competition between schools (a voucher-subsidized competitive market) and this sounds like freedom of contract, which is fine with me. The best protection a good worker has is a competitive market for his skills. Who wants to work alongside lazy clock-punchers? The security which unions promise to sub-par employees comes at too great a cost to customers (taxpayers, in the public sector) and to dedicated employees.

  19. mhj says:

    The clause: “allow principals to fire a teacher without providing a reason or offering an appeals process” is what makes this question utterly ridiculous.

    There isn’t a reputable academic pollster in his or her mind that would call that a non-leading question designed to tap true attitudes about school reform on tenure. Most people know teachers, they have friends who are teachers or family. No one – no matter how pro merit pay or tenure roll back they are – would say sure let’s let principals fire teachers for no cause at all – hell let’s not even make them give a reason. They can just say they didn’t like the skirt Mrs. Smith wore on Tuesday. That’s a joke. No one would tell a pollster – sure mark me down for that. Okay a few wackos would. And that’s why you saw 3 to 1 GOP opposition to that question in the poll. It was horribly framed – not to mention one would have to ignore the findings in serious scholarly commissioned polls like PDK which has been ongoing since 1969 that always finds broad support for upping teacher accountability and scaling back tenure.

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