Oh, and now the fighting over charters really starts. Neither bill about charters made it out of committee and some people are really steaming.
Here's an AP story.
Business groups have been pushing the bills, and moderate Democrats have signaled they want to see such reforms approved before considering new taxes. Tom accused McAuliffe of simply following the requests of teachers unions and failing to consider the impacts on students.
That seems a bit backwards. Bring on more spending BEFORE you vote in the money to pay for it?
McAuliffe said she and Tom have been negotiating for weeks and have not been able to come to an agreement on this issue.
"I have told Senator Tom I will compromise on these bills," she said. "They have not moved one inch."
This is a deeply flawed bill. I find it interesting that Senator Tom won't negotiate on it.
Tom said a heated discussion over the issue hosted by Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown, D-Spokane, failed to resolve the disagreement Friday morning.
Brown said there isn't support within the Democratic caucus for the charter-school bill, but that Tom and Republican Sen. Steve Litzow said nothing would pass out of the committee unless Tom's charter-school and evaluation bills were approved without amendments.
"It's never going to work in the Senate to say 'my way or the highway,' " Brown said.
Brown said the teacher-evaluation bills, one sponsored by Tom and another supported by Gov. Chris Gregoire, are still on the table.
What's interesting are some of the comments especially in yet-another Times editorial on the subject. Here's a few comments from the editorial:
"It is discouraging that two individuals could completely block the dialogue from happening," said Ramona Hattendorf, of the Washington state PTA. "The idea of having a good evaluation and discussing how it should be used is not radical."
Oh, you mean like when people in leadership use their power to push an agenda? That kind of discouraging?
Colleagues, led by Republican Sens. Steve Litzow, R-Mercer Island, and Rodney Tom, D-Medina, refused to take a vote on any bill if McAuliffe refused to consider charters.
Well, okay but you'd have to explain to the rest of the Legislature how one issue would cause you to not do any other work.
But efforts to tie them (teacher evaluations) to student growth measures — including test scores — have been rejected by the teachers union and the Democrats who do their bidding.
Unlike Republicans who do the bidding of wealthy outside interests.
Profiles in courage include Rep. Eric Pettigrew, a Democrat who shares Santos' South Seattle district, home to some of the Seattle Public Schools' neediest students. Pettigrew wrote a thoughtful bill authorizing 10 closely monitored charter schools a year. They would be run by nonprofits, focus on struggling students and could use unionized teachers. Nothing in that bill could lead anyone to think it privatized education.
This paragraph was a whopper.
One, Pettigrew did NOT write this bill alone. Senator Tom even said that to me.
Two, there is no more "monitoring" of charters in this bill than most other charter laws. Which, given national stats on charter school closures, means not as much as there should be.
Three, obviously the Times do NOT read the bill because yes, charters could be run/managed by FOR-PROFITs and there is no guarantee ANY of the charters will definitely focus on struggling students. So yes, if for-profit companies can come in via charters OR Transformation Zone schools, then it is privatization.
Students don't have time for drama. Adults must find areas of agreement and move toward politically doable solutions.
Right, the old "adult issues" diatribe. I'm sorry but that gets really old. Also, "politically doable?"