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Union Dues on the Rise
posted by: Cindy Omlin | June 24, 2011, 02:08 pm   

Teacher unions are in a bit of a financial pinch these days. With declining membership, unilaterally negative press, and countless brewing legislative and legal battles, union leaders are struggling to live within their means. According to tax documents, despite taking in more than $1.5 billion in nationwide revenue in 2008-09, some states are literally upside-down. Faced with difficult decisions about keeping bloated staffs and fueling political agendas, state union chapters across the country are imposing dues hikes and various one-time legislative "assessments" to keep afloat.

Stranger than Fiction: NEA Partners with WWE
posted by: Cindy Omlin | June 24, 2011, 01:32 pm   

While non-education related and politically and or financially motivated partnerships are the norm with the National Education Association, last week's bizarre initiative was turning heads in the blogosphere. The NEA's Health Information Network (HIN) and the Create Coalition announced a partnership with World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) in the newly dubbed "Be a Star," social justice and anti-bulling campaign.
NEA Supports AT&T Merger
posted by: Cindy Omlin | June 16, 2011, 02:52 pm   

What do AT&T and several liberal advocacy groups have in common? According to recent news, organizations including the NAACP, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation and the National Education Association have all issued public statements of support in a new multi-billion dollar merger between telecom heavyweights AT&T and T Mobile.
Secretary Duncan’s Call to Action
posted by: Cindy Omlin | June 14, 2011, 02:18 pm   

As the Obama administration counts down toward the summer deadline to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, commonly referred to as No Child Left Behind, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan is preparing to grant states regulatory relief from key provisions of the federal school accountability law in exchange for what he calls, "commitments to key reforms." While Duncan gave few details about what "relief" would actually entail, key congressional insiders warn that without action, Secretary Duncan could issue blanket waivers to states with no resolutions in sight.
New Jersey Governor Unveils Public-Private Partnership Program
posted by: Cindy Omlin | June 13, 2011, 11:37 am   

Last week, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie proposed legislation allowing for the privatization of the five lowest-performing schools in the state. The pilot program would transfer control to private school-management companies after school board approval in an effort to produce a turnaround. Since the late 1980’s, the state has experienced low-performing schools despite record-setting spending as mandated by the New Jersey Supreme Court. Consequently, state residents pay more per student in the state’s impoverished districts than in wealthy districts, resulting in the nation’s highest local property tax and little improvement in schools.

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