IBJNews

Bill on teacher union rights heads to governor

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

A bill to restrict Indiana teachers' collective bargaining rights has cleared its final legislative hurdle, becoming the first part of Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels' sweeping education agenda to make it to the governor's desk.

The GOP-led Indiana Senate voted 30-19 Tuesday in favor of a House-passed version of the bill, which would prohibit contracts between school districts and teachers unions from including anything other than wages and wage-related benefits.

The limits would affect contract agreements between districts and unions for teachers and any other school employees, such as bus drivers, custodians and nurses, starting July 1. Contracts reached before July 1 couldn't extend beyond June 2013.

Supporters of the proposal argue that teacher contracts shouldn't include details that do little to improve academics, such as requiring comfortable teachers' lounges. Daniels has pushed for the bill, saying in his State of the State address that collective bargaining agreements go too far.

Opponents — including the Indiana State Teachers Association — point out that the contracts are negotiated locally. They say school district leaders should have the power to agree to the contract provisions they want.

The Republican-controlled House had previously voted for the proposal, which now heads to Daniels for his signature.

Other big pieces of Daniels' aggressive education agenda face key votes this week.

Daniels also wants to:

— Create the nation's most expansive voucher program directing taxpayer money to private schools. The bill could get a Senate vote as early as Wednesday. On Tuesday, the Senate amended the bill to address concerns from Sen. Brent Steele, R-Bedford. Steele has said he doesn't want tax money to religious schools, saying some Muslim schools teach extremism. The amended bill states that private schools participating in the voucher program — along with public schools — shall not "teach the violent overthrow of the government of the United States." The Senate also included in the bill a tax deduction of $1,000 per child for parents who home-school their children or send them to private schools.

— Expand charter schools. A version of that bill has passed both the House and Senate. House leaders are now determining whether to agree to the Senate version or try to hammer out a compromise.

— Implement merit pay for teachers by requiring student achievement to account for part of teacher evaluations. That bill could get a House as early as Wednesday.

ADVERTISEMENT

  • The fine print
    Whoa, "The Senate also included in the bill a tax deduction of $1,000 per child for parents who home-school their children or send them to private schools."

    EVERY taxpayer that does not have a child in school (e.g., seniors, childless couples, singles) should be OUTRAGED that they are not allowed to claim this deduction, too!!

    So, let me get this straight, not only are MY tax dollars going to send someone else's kid to private school, but, that kid's parents get a deduction, too??

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
thisissue1-092914.jpg 092914

Subscribe to IBJ
ADVERTISEMENT