Friday, April 3, 2015

Kitzhaber Wanted to Strip Teachers of Ability to Strike

Willamette Week 
April 2nd, 2015

Oregon House leaders on Tuesday announced that they'd approved a $7.255 billion schools budget for the next two years as the state’s financial commitment to K-12 education. Schools advocates say they want more—and that could set up a battle for the remainder of the 2015 legislative session.
But many people believe the amount the state spends on schools is not the biggest money issue in Oregon education. Instead, it's the tension between the Legislature, which doles out the state support for schools, and local school boards that decide how to spend the money.
Former Gov. John Kitzhaber recognized the problem. Local districts negotiate their own contracts with teachers’ unions. Kitzhaber believed that as long as the Oregon Education Association, the 45,000 member teachers' union, prevailed over local school boards—and it often does—districts will continue to spend money faster than the state can send it to them.

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