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The Plight Of US Education: Can Obama Do Anything To Help Teachers Keep Their Jobs?
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President Barack Obama unveiled his jobs creation plan to mostly lackluster response. Included in that plan is his personal mission to help prevent more teacher and school employee layoffs. Across the nation, over 85,000 teachers and ancillary school staff have lost their positions over this past year. Since 2008, there have been nearly 300,000 such layoffs leading to overcrowding in nearly every classroom in every district. School budgets have been slashed so dramatically that some classes have never been offered to children with some worried that these classes will never be held again. Other school districts are struggling to provide books and equipment to their students and some are holding classes in outdated, potentially dangerous school buildings. In Columbus, Ohio, one school district was facing a forced redistricting if some safety improvements could not be done before the first day of school.

The proposal is one that is expected to be similar to the one used in August of 2010which is estimated to have saved as many as 100,000 positions for teachers and first responders across the US. But, there are several battles that are going to have to be fought before the proposal is made into reality. First, Obama must also balance the money for this proposal with other suggested initiatives which include extending the payroll tax cut and unemployment benefits. He also needs to push hard to get the proposal past the Republican controlled House. Republicans voted against the proposal last year.

In an issue that serves to highlight the nature of the problem, US Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan is calling out the Chicago Public Schools, pointing out that their short days and school years have gone on for long enough. Those schools have the shortest school day as well as the overall shortest school calendar of all of the urban districts, something Duncan had hoped to change during his time managing that same district. The system would not bear such a change during that time period, however.

The Chicago Teacher’s Union is pointing out that the system is facing a much larger budget deficit than it ever did while Duncan was in control. A four percent teacher’s raise which had been negotiated in the recent past is not going to be paid out because of a lack of funding. Officials are asking the teachers to work slightly longer hours this year and take a two percent pay raise in the following years. If they were to agree to working the extra time this year, it would be voluntary, however the law changes for the 2012-2013 school year, adding that extra time.

The  proposal and other job related plans are being called Obama’s make it or break it - with experts saying that it will be his performance in this area that can cost him all hopes of ever being reelected no matter who the Republican nominee ends up being.


Street Talk

Hi Yvonne, This is the reason I wrote my articles part I and II, hopefully, to educate the American people, especially our leaders in the government. Let me know what you think after you read both. Regards, Daniel

Reply
  about 7 years ago
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