So in order to remedy the current administrative abuses there needs to be punitive and, ultimately futile, reforms directed at teachers.
2 + 2 = 5
"So who represents the children in collective bargaining?"
In employment contract disputes exclusively between school districts and teachers?
"The beneficiaries of this practice are the Union bosses, administration & the politicians who carry the water of these two for the purpose of power."
Oh, and the teachers who get more than minimal compensation.
"The issue is the years of activity by the Teacher's Union that has cost our school systems millions of dollars for a substandard quality result and still cries for more."
Again: what specific "activity?" Let's have dialogue not empty fingerpointing.
"The TEA isn't the only option for teachers in TN. I recommend the Professional Educators of TN (PET)."
True, now these and all other unions are equally as ineffective.
"Let me get this straight. TN has had lower standards than most states & had to go on a PR defensive to prepare parents (I have two kids in public schools with a sister who now teaches at a magnet school) for the surprise of lower achievement when measured with the same testing that other states have been using. In TN, we spell "quality" by lowering the test requirements so our kids are pushed for excellence."
I am all for genuine increased rigor in the classroom. It is the goal I strive for daily. What contained in these bills has anything to do with improvements in standards, curriculum, instruction, or education in general? These are only attempts to negate three decades of progress for working people.
"I see the struggles of teachers and kids for resources in the classroom."
Struggling teachers who are now effectively silenced. Without the option to strike school districts had little incentive to listen to teacher input before, what reason will they have now?
"If folks down at the saw mill want to unionize, that's their choosing, because I don't pay their wages. If someone chooses a public job for their career, that's fine, but some taxpayers don't think it ok to unionize and bargain for taxpayer supplied dollars."
All the mental and verbal gymnastics which will need to be employed to extend rights to some workers but not to others. The Chamber of Commerce and the corporations which backed these bills are grinning ear-to-ear knowing that the tactic of divide-and-conquer can still be used to have one segment of the underclass bludgeon another. I hope for parity's sake that same tax-payer outrage will be used when charter schools are expanded and public funds are spent to subsidize yet another corporate industry.
The facts remain that poverty and the apathy it breeds are the two biggest obstacles to academic performance. Until the underlying socio-economic issues are addressed, all attempts at "reform" are window-dressing and snake-oil. The corporate-backed politicians and those who elect them will continue to scapegoat any group which provides usable political fodder.