From Caliente to Lukewarm: Teacher Support for Barack Obama

It’s summertime and the living is easy. It’s almost August and soon it will be scorching in New York City. Teachers are on vacation, but you can rest assured that they’ve heard about Barack Obama’s support for the idea of merit pay. That will not be going over well. Expect an icy reception from many of the millions of teachers when they return from hither and yon.

There is one positive take away. Mike Bloomberg loves the idea.


Mayor Michael Bloomberg, a potential independent
presidential candidate, is pushing for performance-based merit pay
for teachers in the nation’s public schools.
Bloomberg, in prepared remarks for a speech to a National Urban
League conference in St. Louis, said, “We should be offering
teachers and principals incentives not only to take the toughest
assignments, and to fill special needs, but also to get the best
possible results from their students.”

Bloomberg’s trip has added to speculation that he may run for
president, even though he denies any interest in doing so. Four
Democratic and two Republican presidential candidates are scheduled
to address the conference Friday.
He recently left the Republican party to become an independent,
built a detailed personal Web site and has increased his
out-of-state travel. How much appeal an independent bid might have is unclear.

A new poll by Quinnipiac University shows that while Bloomberg’s approval
rating remains high among New York City voters, a majority wouldn’t
vote for him if he ran for president. In his remarks, Bloomberg praised Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama for supporting for the concept of merit pay.

Obama recently told the National Education Association, country’s
largest teachers union, that the idea should be considered.
“I was happy to hear that Senator Obama recently became the
first Democratic presidential candidate to offer at least modest
support for the idea of bonus pay for teachers,” Bloomberg said.

Perhaps Mike will revert back to the Dems and serve as Barack’s running mate in 2012. At least, they’ll have this in common.

A little Quality Time with the Rev. (Though Bloomberg knows Charles Barron would gut him like a pig if he had the chance…”Herbert, hold me back!!”…Mike looks like he’s going to a funeral.)

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  1. I’m against Merit Pay due to there being too many factors outside of the teachers’ control that would impact their “ratings”.

  2. There are a great many factors beyond their control – including their two primary bosses, the principal and the superintendent.

  3. Obama wants teachers to set the standards for their own evaluations and, let’s admit it, by their own standards there are a few bad apples in many schools who are robbing their students of opportunities to learn. For teachers to reclaim the respect due their profession, they must weed those bad apples out themselves. Obama is the most pro-union candidate we’ve got right now, walking picket lines, hiring a union shop to produce and sell his campaign paraphernalia, and supporting the rule of 51% or more majority votes for a union means a union will be formed. Your PAC or lobby group may endorse Clinton, but you are free to campaign, donate and vote for your best interests, and if you want a strong union rather than someone striking deals to export jobs and import labor, Obama’s in your best interests. No PAC or federal lobbyist $$ in his campaign. Support Obama, and teachers will do better, with the resources and support they’ve been robbed of since long before No Child’s Behind Left. Support setting your own standards and process for evaluation for merit, and like other government shops that have incorporated merit pay, most teachers will earn it, a few will have to take some courses to do better next time. Vote for the Other Dem. leader right now, and your job may go to an imported teacher.

  4. Watch him in NH talk about teachers, increasing their pay, letting them set the standards for student and teacher performance, etc. etc. Oh, and his sister’s a teacher – he is not trying to dog teachers, inform yourselves please.

  5. BTW, no one said he’s trying to dog teachers, but unless you’ve been under a rock for a decade you already know there is skepticism of any proposals to tie compensation to student performance.

  6. Not entirely sure if it even matters, but I’m guessing that picture of Mike Bloomberg and Al Sharpton was taken around the time of the Sean Bell shooting. It looks like he’s going to a funeral perhaps because it’s pretty close to that.

    I know Bloomberg has met with Sharpton various times during his term, but the Sean Bell incident was the one time I can remember Bloomberg rounding up the whole “black leaders” posse (including David Dinkins in the back) for a press conference at City Hall….

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