Newsflash from the December 18, 2013 Sacramento Bee:
A ballot measure submitted by a political consultant for education advocate Michelle Rhee seeks to remove seniority as a factor when California school districts lay off teachers, requiring that they instead base decisions on performance ratings. Performance, under the proposal, would be determined in part based on student test scores.
Why the general public needs to DECLINE TO SIGN this deceptive ballot initiative, and disqualify “The High Quality Teachers Act of 2014 (HQTA)”
- we need to put days of budget cuts and mass teacher layoffs behind us. We have a teacher shortage and we need more experienced teachers in classrooms, not less.
- we need teachers with seniority to mentor ones that have just entered the profession. This ballot initiative would pit new teachers against experienced ones.
- we need to focus on devoting more resources to ensure parents’ REAL priorities are met: all kids get small class sizes, arts and music in the school day, languages, updated computer labs, and so on.
- testing companies never designed student standardized tests to measure teacher effectiveness and we shouldn’t start misusing tests now. “Value-added” is junk science and even Microsoft stopped using this discredited method on their employees.
Let’s deny this ballot initiative a chance at the ballot. Every ballot initiative must receive several hundred thousand qualifying signatures before it can be voted on. Paid signature-gatherers will be at public places trying to get the needed number to put HQTA up for a vote in November, 2014.
You can nip this in the bud by denying the petition gatherers your signature and telling others to DECLINE TO SIGN HQTA.
Take our pledge to STAND WITH TEACHERS & DECLINE TO SIGN, and tell others to withhold their signatures from Rhee’s ballot initiative too! Use the Facebook and Twitter buttons to spread word. This ballot initiative is too flawed to waste voters’ time and money on. Keep HQTA off the ballot in 2014.