Friday, July 27, 2012

District's Leaders Urge New Teachers to Join the Union

There is an interesting post on the Tampa Bay Times' Gradebook blog about advice district leaders gave to incoming teachers to the public school system in Hillsborough County at their induction ceremony. They urged them to join the union!

Hillsborough school district officials gave a lot of good advice to the new teachers who gathered Wednesday morning at Strawberry Crest High School. Never stop learning. Always leave your door open when you meet with a student. Don't Facebook with your students.
And, as much as anything: Join the Classroom Teachers Association.

According to what we hear from the current crop of education reformers, this is an interesting bit of advice coming from administrators.  Don't we always hear that the union is the entity that gets in the way of principals and districts getting rid of bad teachers? We always hear of these principals and district leaders coming into schools with these great plans for school improvement only for the "union rules" to stifle some or all of their plans. 

I do not know any details about the relationship between this local and the district. Looking at some of the comments, there may be other reasons for this advice. Even if the district is giving this advice for other reasons besides teacher support, it is a fact that districts are in a battle with the state and even the federal government over new mandates that can do considerable harm to education. The union may be the only means by which to combat these new regulations. 

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