Left behind in L.A.
Los Angeles's poor students aren't getting a lot of love. An Education Trust - West report shows that the Los Angeles Unified School District's most experienced teachers tend to work in higher-paying, less-troubled schools in the city's more affluent areas. No surprise there. According to the report, LAUSD's "seniority bumping rights" policy is partly to blame. It allows more-senior teachers first dibs on open positions in less stressful environs. Predictably, teachers opt for Bel Air over South Central. New York City's schools have much the same problem, and Chancellor Joel Klein has some ideas on how to change that. Among his thoughts: Give higher salaries to qualified teachers who opt to work in underperforming schools, and performance bonuses to teachers in schools with "exceptional growth" in test scores. Needless to say, if New York's United Federation of Teachers could have its way, it would run Klein and his pay proposals right out of town - maybe all the way to L.A.
"A-list teachers avoid poor kids," by Naush Boghossian, Los Angeles Daily News, September 15, 2005
"Schools Chief Urges Teacher Pay Changes," by David M. Herszenhorn [check spelling], New York Times, September 21, 2005.