Monday, October 16, 2006

Combatting "The March Of The Lemons"

A new California law is aimed at stopping ineffective teachers from transferring from campus-to-campus in what has become known as the "Turkey Trot" or "March of the Lemons:"
Educators across the United States are watching to see how California fares with a new law that replaces the seniority-based system for teacher transfers.

The legislation signed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger bars school districts from forcing principals at low-scoring schools to hire teachers who transfer from other schools in the district, reports.

Opposed by the teachers' unions, the law is designed to prevent weak teachers with seniority from bumping newer teachers that the principal prefers.

In past years priority transfer teachers upset the hiring plans of James Dierke, an award-winning principal in San Francisco, Stateline said.

"As a principal in a lower-performing school, I'm charged with bringing up the test scores," Dierke told Stateline. "It's difficult to do that when you don't have a winning team."

The California change was backed by a national non-profit group called New Teacher Project, which claimed that 40 percent of vacancies in five large state school districts went to teachers transferring between schools.

While not all of the transferees were poor teachers, nearly two-thirds of principals reported getting at least one teacher they didn't want.
Get the Governor's press release.

As of this writing, there's still no news about what, if anything, that Governator Governor Schwarzenegger intends to do about ineffective district superintendents who nest entrench themselves in school districts by insisting on four-year contracts or incompetent school administrators who can't be dismissed due to tenure and seniority
See our latest EduPosts right here and this date's Extra Credit Reading over there.