May 2, 2010
What Do DC Teachers And Billion-Dollar Foundations Have In Common ?
Answer: Both are Rhee’s Playthings.
As most of you probably already have heard by now , Dr. Natwar Gandhi, Chief Financial Officer officially confirmed on April 30 at a DC City Council hearing that he would not certify a WTU T.A. (tentative agreement) due to the conditions imposed by private foundations. Another reason that the T.A. cannot be certified at this time is due to the fact DC Government does not have the fiscal resources to fund the entire teacher compensation package. Reportedly DC government faces a total 528 million dollar budget deficit overall.
An interesting point that Efavorite highlights in the timely piece below is that DC school officials have proposed to lay off DC teachers in 2011 as a means to narrow the funding gap and win certification of teachers' retro pay and future raises. The million dollar question is: Should the WTU Tentative Agreement ever get ratified by our union members, will you still be around to collect your pay raise or will you be among those on the unemployment line? Candi Peterson, Blogger in residence
Featuring Efavorite- Guest Writer
"Bored with pushing lowly teachers around, Rhee has taken on billion-dollar foundations, setting them up to be the saviors of school reform, then watching as District CFO Gandhi predictably rejects them for having unacceptable strings attached to their generous gifts. Even better, this happened on the same day that a letter to the editor defending the foundations, written by their spokesperson Cate Swinburn, appeared in the Washington Post.
For Chancellor Rhee, the thrill of RIFing 266 teachers based on a bogus budget deficit was probably nothing compared to publicly humiliating billion-dollar foundations that had just pledged millions to her reform effort.
Now she’s saying, “the District is attempting to persuade the private funders -- the Broad, Arnold, Walton and Robertson foundations -- to modify their requirements.”
I wouldn’t be surprised if they do it. Once she has people dancing to her tune, it seems hard to stop.
In the same article, Gandhi said one of the ways that school officials had proposed “to narrow the contract funding gap” was “…expediting a planned reduction in the number of teachers to save $7.6 million in 2011….”
Got that, teachers? If the contract ever comes to a vote and passes, it could take a RIF to fund your back pay and pay raises, if you ever see them, before getting RIFd. It’s all laid out in front of you now. It’s a matter of deciding if you’re going to dance to that tune.
You’ll be in the company of billionaires, if you do."
Posted by The Washington Teacher courtesy of Efavorite