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Roundup of Teacher-Related News

Teacher Beat is back!

I've been catching up on some of the big teacher-related news of the last week. (Yes, my brother had to pry my hands away from the computer while I was on vacation.) Here are a few tidbits that caught my attention:

• Interesting news about a Kentucky lawsuit over whether teachers should be allowed to leave their unions at will, rather than during the "open enrollment period."

• New York City Chancellor Joel Klein bites the bullet and tells principals to hire teachers from the absent-teacher reserve pool, even though he's philosophically opposed to the idea.

• American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten calls the Race to the Top an extension of No Child Left Behind, or "Bush III." She seems to have forgotten the crucial contributions of Democratic Sen. Edward Kennedy and Rep. George Miller in the crafting of the NCLB law.

The Washington Post's Marc Fisher does a big profile of Michelle Rhee. I'd have liked to see a bit more analysis about whether her hard-charging style has actually given her leverage for her agenda or improved the actual quality of teaching, but we may have to wait until the D.C. contract is finalized to find out.

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