Friday, February 04, 2011

Teachers who put the kids first

Speaking of layoffs solely by seniority and other insane policies favored by the unions, here's a great op ed in the NY Post by the founders of Educators 4 Excellence, Sydney Morris and Evan Stone:

The debate over how to fix America's schools has become increasingly polarized. There are the so-called reformers on one side, demanding wholesale changes to the way we hire and fire teachers and structure our classrooms. And there are the unions on the other -- looking out for their members, but offering few solutions.

Lost in the back-and-forth are the voices of those actually working on the front lines -- teachers who are calmly and rationally asking the question: What is best for our kids?

That's why we recently left our full-time teaching jobs to start Educators 4 Excellence, a growing movement of teachers who want to work in a system where they're treated as professionals, held accountable for their work and rewarded for their successes. They are teachers who prioritize the needs of their students above all else.

Created to provide educators with more direct access to the education-policy debate, E4E brings like-minded teachers together to share ideas with policymakers. With more than 1,300 members in New York, E4E is one clear example of how the education-reform debate cannot, and will not, be complete as long as teachers are presumed to speak with a single, monolithic voice.

And what does an education system driven by teacher-generated policy look like? It is a system that recruits, retains and supports the highest-quality teachers, restores professionalism to our field and places student achievement first.

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