But the problem is, technocrat Rhee and Mayor Fenty are in league with Ownership Society privatizers bent on replacing public with privately managed (non-union) charter schools and vouchers for Catholic (non-union) schools. That means that the pay provisions of any new contract won’t be worth the paper they’re written on as budgets are slashed and closed neighborhood schools are replaced by charters or vouchers. Any D.C. teacher could then be fired without due process, especially in schools marked by Rhee for closing. As the teaching force moves from public to charter or Catholic schools, teachers are subject to the pay scales, work rules, and whims of the private management companies and parents and communities can like it or lump it. This is especially true as charter caps are lifted and charters handed out freely to the Archdiocese.
If D.C. union prez George Parker bites on Rhee’s cynical proposal, without a plan to keep public schools public, I think he and the union are through. I’m sure other urban districts will be watching closely.
Are they really for choice?
Conservatives call themselves “choice” advocates for public school reform. Let's see how many of them support choice when Rev. Meeks brings 200 bus loads of Chicago inner-city kids up to suburban Winnetka and tries to enroll them in a wealthy, white North Shore high school, to call attention to the enormous funding disparities.