Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Management/ Union relations in Rhode Island

...or lack thereof.
I'd missed until today this letter from Rhode Island Education Commissioner Deborah Gist to state school districts:

PROVIDENCE -- In a harshly worded letter, Education Commissioner Deborah A. Gist has alerted Rhode Island's school superintendents that she will take severe action against any district that is using seniority, job fairs or bumping to assign, keep or lay off teachers.
In a four-page letter dated Jan. 31 and released late Friday, Gist threatens to impose sanctions "up to and including loss of certification;" taking districts to court; or withholding state education aid unless they comply with her interpretation of a key education regulation called the Basic Education Program.
(h/t Edushyster)
This is of course part of Rhode Island's compliance with the conditions under which it received Race to the Top funding. It isn't supposed to supplant labor law; such changes are supposed to be negotiated. T
he state was lauded last week by Secretary Duncan as being among a few states making great progress in their compliance to Race to the Top's requirements...
...while test scores, that by which such progress is generally recognized, show "scant improvement" for the second year in a row.

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