A proposal on the November ballot has Missouri’s public school systems nervous even though backers of it have abandoned their campaign. Amendment Three remains on the ballot although the Teach Great Campaign has quit campaigning for it.
Teach Great organized the petition campaign largely bankrolled by financier Rex Sinquefield, but says its polling shows the public isn’t buying the idea. That’s not good enough for Missouri’s school districts that want to crush the proposition in November, sending a strong message to Teach Great.
Spokesman Brent Ghan with the Missouri School Boards Association says the association does not oppose reforming the teacher tenure process, but Amendment three is an attack on local control of schools. “The issue of teacher evaluation and performance…is not a subject that really belongs in the construction…and, second, it goes way beyond addressing the issue of teacher tenure to mandating how school districts will evaluate teachers in the process of hiring and firing.”
He says Amendment Three takes that away and replaces it with a system that determines teacher pay and retention on the basis of a standardized test that hasn’t been developed yet. He says the standardized tests would be given in all districts regardless of their academic records and needs.