Mass., Colo. Teachers' Union Out of Race to Top
Interesting politics going on here. Perhaps the American Federation of Teachers Massachussetts feels emboldened by the fact that the two winning RTTT applications both won support from teachers' unions. But on the other hand, it may cost them some political clout: The story quotes one of the legislature's education committee co-chairs, and a Democrat at that, as being very disappointed in the move.
In the first round, Massachusetts had an unusual requirement that all districts get a union signature in order to participate. State leaders are rethinking that requirement this time around, but they're still worried that the lack of union support will scuttle the state's chances. They are apparently going to move forward with an application with or without the union's support.
In Colorado, the Colorado Education Association is upset that state commissioner Dwight Jones is supporting a state senator's bill that would set a definition of teacher effectiveness and make some changes to the state's tenure-granting and dismissal laws.
The union argues that the bill will interfere with the collaborative process for developing such measures and is narrowly focused on boosting the state's scores on only one area of its RTTT application.