3The only legal way for some of my family clients to exercise choice between two districts is eitherthrough a real estate transaction
moving their residence - or Public Education Grant. However, as ourlawsuit alleges, Public Education Grants have not resulted in great choice for parents of children inunderperforming schools.
ISD’s have the power to reject those applications, without any reason,
without any recourse, and they
aren’t required to keep records of it.
Another inefficiency symptom is the fact that schools are highly regulated. Thereby requiring excessiveadministrative staff to assure compliance with all the
imposed on the schools. TheHome-Rule District Charter was another way for districts to become more efficient. Yet, as the evidencewill show, by the time it was voted on in the House of Representatives, it was watered down with a listof 20+ regulations that made it unviable as an option. So much so that
not a single district has opted tooperate under this structure.
There is a lack of effective competition in the market for teachers. Salary schedules that pay the samebase salary for every teacher of the same tenure are not efficient. The evidence will be replete from the
ISD’s with “I can’t hire good high school math and science teachers.”
This is followed by the admissionthat they pay them the same base salary as a kindergarten teacher.As the evidence will show, there is not a single market for teachers. There is a separate market forkindergarten teachers, for high school math, science, English, etc. teachers, and each of those marketscall for differentiation of wages. The absence of market forces driving teacher pay is a symptom of monopoly.
Further, as the plaintiff’s expert has said,
keeps overall teacher wages down
. Texas hasthousands of great dedicated teachers yet we
fail to treat and reward them as professionals
There is no competition amongst teachers; a concept which seems to draw the ire of many in themonopoly. Lawyers compete to be the best. Auto technicians compete to be the best. As do hair stylists,landscapers, doctors, sales people, interior designer, and on and on.
In a competitive system, goodteachers would be much better compensated.
As it stands now a vast majority of districts utilize the current state model for teacher evaluation
model that does not take into account each teacher’s student performance as a measure of their
effectiveness. So, Texas currently has no idea which teachers are truly effective. Again, agreed to byexperts from every group.
.Chapter 21 is a classic response to a monopolistic system. If wages are to be held artificially low, and thedemand for good teachers is to be held artificially low, then they have to offer something to keep theworkforce in place. The message is,
we won’t pay you market wages
, but we will guarantee a risk-freeworkplace where mediocrity is accepted and rewarded the same as excellence, and your job is safeunless you do something really-really bad
and even then, it may cost districts up to $90,000 to fire you,as Mr. Thompson, I am told, has testified to before the legislature regarding Houston ISD. Andmeanwhile
you will get full pay while they’re
attempting to fire you. In the end, you may get to settle fora resignation, a severan
ce package, and a good recommendation to the next victims…..I mean,