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Education Reporter

Education Briefs 
New York legislators made it illegal for school officials to consider whether teachers had used "analysis of the available student performance" to improve their teaching when evaluating teachers for tenure. It is already illegal for tenure decisions to take student performance itself into account. "Denying any connection between teaching and learning is a dangerous course for unions to chart," writes John Merrow, education correspondent for the "News Hour with Jim Lehrer." "It contradicts what experience teaches us. And it flies in the face of common sense. If unions are telling us that there's no connection between teaching and learning, why should we then support teachers, or public education?" (Wall Street Journal, 5-9-08)

NEA delegates approved a plan to increase the union's political lobbying efforts on the internet. "NEA shall create a comprehensive plan with the goal of at least doubling the number of NEA and NEA-sponsored cyber lobbyists over the next five years," reads the approved new business item. Lobbyists will use the internet to promote NEA goals at the national, state, and local levels.

Randy Weingarten, president of New York City's United Federation of Teachers, became president of the 1.4 million-member American Federation of Teachers on July 14. Weingarten announced the AFT's plan to lead the push for a "broader, bolder approach" to public education. The "broader, bolder" idea comes from the liberal Economic Policy Institute, and a number of influential Democrats support it. Supporters want schools to become community centers that provide much more than education. "Imagine schools that are open all day and offer after-school and evening recreational activities and homework assistance," said Weingarten. "And suppose the schools included child care and dental, medical and counseling clinics." Weingarten said such schools would "serve the neediest children by bringing together under one roof all the services and activities they and their families need." (New York Times, 7-15-08)

August 2008 Education Reporter
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Education Reporter is published monthly by Eagle Forum Education & Legal Defense Fund with editorial offices at 7800 Bonhomme Ave., St. Louis, MO 63105, (314) 721-1213. The views expressed in this newsletter are those of the persons quoted and should not be attributed to Eagle Forum Education & Legal Defense Fund. Annual subscription $25. Back issues available at $2.
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