File this under, “Why am I not surprised?”
The Globe has a story – and I do mean “story” today New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s lecture yesterday at Harvard’s Grad School of Education Askwith Forum.
“Christie lashes out at teachers unions.”
If you want the REAL story of what happened at the forum, I encourage you to visit Mike Stopa’s excellent, FACT-based blog post on it
And read my comment from the Globe site:
This headline is a joke– what Christie said was, “Teachers deserve a union that’s as good as they are.” And after the Governor gave an hour-long speech and took dozens of thoughtful questions to which he gave equally thoughtful and responsive answers, he gets this cheap-shot (and false) headline and five lines that quoted him out of context in order to make him seem like a hypocrite because of his weight? Low-blow, even for the Globe.
I was at the event, and what I heard was a sincere concern about our kids’ future, in a world where whether a person goes to college or jail can be determined by what school he attends. As Christie mentioned, school systems that receive $25,000 per student in funding have graduation rates as low as 29% – and of the kids who do graduate and make it to college, 90% need a year of remediation. More money does not equal better schools.
Christie talked about the need to end the tenure system where teachers are guaranteed a job for life after 3 years. Of the 150,000 NJ teachers, only 17 were dismissed in a period of ten years. 17 in ten years – that’s because there is no accountability, no consequences for poor performance. Another problem for many states – we pay teachers based on seniority, not merit, and that needs to end. Tenure should be earned every year, and teachers should receive pay based on evaluations of their performance and their ability to improve their students’ performance. This is what happens in every other profession – hard-working teachers have nothing to worry about. But the unions won’t budge – to close a $ billion budget gap (K-12 education eats up one-third of the budget there) Christie asked teachers to take a one-year pay freeze and pay a 1.5% contribution to their health benefits. The unions would not even allow a vote on it. And they are a monopoly – 70% of money spent on school committee elections there came from unions. The system is rigged, as he said, to protect the interests of the adults, at the expense of the students. And if he doesn’t make an issue out of this and mobilize the parents and the public, nothing is going to change because the unions have consolidated so much power. Just watch movie “The Cartel,” to get a sense of what he is up against, and then we’ll see who is David and who is Goliath here.
4/30/2011 11:18 AM EDT
But I have to ask this – WHY doesn’t the media (presumably legitimate resources such as the AP and the Boston Globe) do its job anymore? Why is it that WE constantly have to fact-check and correct them? WE, who have full-time jobs already and don’t get paid to spend our time calling bull sh!t on them… I am so sick of the lies. I continue to lose my faith in them every day that I see these misleading, sensationalist headlines and a failure to tell the full story in favor of whatever slanted, truncated version is most likely to please ONE side (and we know WHICH side) – it feels an awful lot like Orwell’s 1984 – I am getting the Left’s fabricated version of news. And if I had not actually been there myself, I might never have realized that NO, this is not what actually happened at that forum, this is NOT an accurate summary of what was said… I expect that from Mother Jones – but the AP??? Am I over-reacting here?