Monday, November 18, 2019

In Case You Missed It – Nov 18, 2019

Here are links to last week's articles receiving the most attention in NEIFPE's social media. Keep up with what's going on, what's being discussed, and what's happening with public education.

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‘This is a warning shot’: Indiana’s Red for Ed rally isn’t a strike, but it’s closing schools anyway

Hoosier teachers are sending a warning! Will legislators finally listen?

From Chalkbeat*
Indiana teachers aren’t going on strike, but experts say they are putting lawmakers on notice.

Tuesday’s fast-growing rally is expected to cancel school for half of the state’s students while as many as 12,000 teachers descend on the Statehouse to make a list of demands, including more funding and higher pay.

“This is a warning shot,” said Kenneth Dau-Schmidt, a Carr professor of labor and employment law at Indiana University. “This is a sign of how serious the problem is and how unified the teachers are.”

FWCS to close for Red for Ed Day

Fort Wayne Community Schools (FWCS), the largest public school district in the state, has decided it will close to allow its teachers to go to the RedforEd March in Indianapolis on November 19.

Fort Wayne Community Schools will close schools on Tuesday – Red for Ed Day – as hundreds of teachers plan to rally in Indianapolis.
FWCS Superintendent, Wendy Robinson included the following in her letter to teachers about Red for Ed Day.

From Wendy Robinson
Beyond Tuesday, I ask you to think about what kind of action you will take to ensure this is not just a one day event. What will you do between Nov. 20, 2019, and Nov. 3, 2020, to create a long-lasting change? The State did not reach this point with public education overnight, and it won’t be fixed in a day. There has been a long, concerted effort to systematically dismantle public education through standardized testing, constantly changing accountability systems and pouring money into private schools. We have been sounding the warnings for years. To change things now will require just as much planning and effort, if not more. True change will only come through legislative action, and that won’t happen if the same people continue to have control of the rule book. While I appreciate your passion for Tuesday’s rally, don’t let it end there.

Holcomb shares teacher concerns, doesn’t criticize closings

Governor Holcomb claims to be waiting for the teacher pay commission to make recommendation on teacher pay...a commission which has no active teachers or school leaders included in its members.

The Republican governor said he was waiting for a teacher pay commission he appointed in February to make recommendations on increasing salaries by the end of 2020.

“We are going to have a gap, still, to fill,” Holcomb said. “That teacher pay commission is what I am going to be paying very close attention to, that menu of options on how to bridge that gap.”

Education advocacy groups estimated this year a 9% funding increase was needed to boost average teacher pay to the midpoint of Indiana’s neighboring states. Republican state schools Superintendent Jennifer McCormick has cited a study showing Indiana as the state with the lowest teacher salary increases since 2002.

Indiana education leader tweets about upcoming teachers’ rally

Many school districts in Indiana are using eLearning Days and professional development days to accommodate teachers taking the day off for the Red for Ed March in Indianapolis on November 19. Could that be why state legislators are suddenly interested in how those days are used? "Local control," formerly a Republican talking point, is once again in danger...

From WISHTV.com8
Jennifer McCormick’s tweet read:

“Since Jan. 2017, I have not been asked for data representing IN districts’ local choice surrounding the usage of differing instructional delivery platforms.

“Any idea why policymakers are now asking for data about eLearning Days and sch. cancellation waiver days?”

“Policymakers” appears to refer to state lawmakers and their staff.

Local school districts, not state law, make the rules on how e-learning days are used.

They asked for Red for Ed

Reformers have no problem with private and charter school students taking time off to lobby in Indianapolis...yet when public school teachers take a day to do the same they find it "just horrible."

From The Statehouse File
The reason so many students, parents and teachers are coming to the Statehouse on Nov. 19 is that the reformers gave them no place else to go.

Every move the reformers have made has funneled all the anger and frustration surrounding the state’s schools right back at them.

They might as well have sent an invitation.

Support for teachers benefits all of society

Letter to the Editor from a Fort Wayne parent and public schools advocate.

Printed in the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette
There are many ways to support public education. If you can't be in Indianapolis to show your support, send your teachers, volunteer to watch their children while they attend, wear red for ed, write your legislators.

You can make a difference. Start by supporting your teachers. I believe our children, our schools and our teachers deserve so much more and you should, too. Educated children are our future.


IPS board approves $31M in raises for teachers, staff

From 13WTHR-TV
The Indianapolis Public Schools Board approved a significant raise for teachers and other district employees at their meeting Tuesday.

In all, the board approved $31.2 million in spending for pay increases as they renewed two-year contracts with the Indianapolis Education Association and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.

The money will come from $31 million in the operating referendum approved by voters.

All teachers with performance reviews of satisfactory or better will receive the increase, which will be at least $2,600 a year. The maximum raise in the first year of the teachers' contract will be $9,400 and $4,200 in the second year.

*Note: Financial sponsors of Chalkbeat include pro-privatization foundations and individuals such as EdChoice, Gates Family Foundation, The Walton Family Foundation, and others.


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