I don't know how many people have seen this, but I thought I would get the opinions of others on here--there's always good debate on topics that might be a hot button like this one.
California teacher tenure and seniority system is struck down
I know we have people who are members here who are educators, and I want to come out up front and say I am NOT in any way trying to bash teachers or the work they do.
With that said, in some ways I am curious to see the response to this. I have three children, two of which are college age now, the third will be in fifth grade in the fall. I have seen a wide range of capabilities from teachers, much the same as I have seen a wide range of capabilities in people in my field of employment. There have been mediocre teachers, a few bad teachers, and a number of excellent teachers that my children have experienced (not to mention the teachers I had growing up).
I am fortunate that where I work, we take on a project for ourselves, bringing it from an idea all the way through to a final product. From there, we maintain responsibility for it until we leave the company or the product is obsoleted (and getting to obsolescence in my industry can take more than 20 years)! There is continuity, and responsibility, and those who cannot do well at the job are easily exposed.
For teachers, they get a new batch of students on a regular basis. This can be seen as a long term project that is worked on by a team of people. The difference, though, is that the team does not work on the project all at once, but rather one member gets to work on it for a while and do their bit, then hands it off to the next after a prescribed amount of time.
The problem is when you have one person in that team who doesn't hold up their share of the load. Milestones for the project are not met, and when the time is up, they just pass it along. Suddenly, the person after them is handed something that is far behind where it should be, and they now have to try and get it caught up.
The biggest thing about the ruling in my opinion is throwing out the provision that should layoffs occur, a junior teacher must be let go one with more years, regardless of ability. This provision (going to my example above) is like laying off the person who is busting their ass to fix the mistakes of the person before, rather than getting rid of the problem. Where I work, we have had a few layoffs over the years and the first people let go are those who are considered 'dead wood'.
So, I throw it out there for debate. What are your thoughts and opinions? I am especially keen on hearing from those members who are educators.