Philly Teacher Union Places Seniority Above Equal Opportunity for Kids

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The bottom line is, the poorest students and the students of color have the highest number of inexperienced and ineffective teachers, the highest rates of teacher-turnover at their schools, the largest number of vacancies, long-term substitutes, teachers teaching outside their subject area and a host of other issues.

Nijmie Dzurinko, of the Philadelphia Student Union, a non-profit run by Philadelphia youth.

No, Ms. Dzurinko is not talking about Jersey, but describing conditions across the river in Philly. The Inquirer reports today on the 40-year Philadelphia desegregation battle which is pitting “racially isolated” and low-performing schools (90% African-American and Latino) against the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers.

At a hearing before a Commonwealth Court Judge, the Philadelphia School District promised to provide educational equity to poor schools by, in part, placing teachers with lots of seniority there and using merit pay as an incentive. But Jerry Jordan, PFT President, says he’s “in talk with union lawyers” since there are “contract issues.”

Really? Talk about tone-deaf. Now a state union leadership is aligning itself with Jim Crow?

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