Diversity of Ideas vs. Gov. Snyder and One-Man, No vote Rule

Everyday, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder comes up with new measures for everything imaginable. Ideas are great; the more, the better. Unfortunately, Snyder’s approach is his voice, his plan, leaving a gaping hole in the fabric of our core democratic values, as well as silencing the voices of his citizens (and possibly the law and due process).

Last week, Snyder spoke before members of Michigan’s state board of education and “outlined his plan to fix the “broken” educational system, including creating a statewide performance review system for teachers.” The problem is, according to the AFT-Michigan, “a statewide mandate undercuts what’s already happening at the district level, such as legislation passed in 2009 when Michigan was after federal Race to the Top funds.” The union stated further that:

“We agree that there needs to be proper teacher evaluation, but we’re already doing this,” said David Hecker, president of the Detroit-based AFT-Michigan. “We’d love guidance on a system, but not a definitive statewide approach. Districts differ, and the people closer to the ground know better.” [….]

The plan, which is competition-based and calls for a $300 million fund to reward top performing districts (instead of top schools), raises significant concerns; especially for top performing schools in a low-performance district, which are often in low-income districts. [See outline of plan here].

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