The following piece was taken in part from the Education Intelligence Agency to view the rest of the piece click here.
In Illinois, Gov. Rod Blagojevich is under fire for consulting with the Illinois Education Association (IEA) and the Illinois Federation of Teachers (IFT) while crafting his school oversight plan. He didn’t, however, consult with legislators or state education officials. “I can’t bring a check to the table,” state Superintendent of Instruction Robert Schiller told the Chicago Tribune. The governor’s plan would strip power from the state board of education and place it in the hands of a new agency under the governor’s control. The unions held a news conference to express their support for the idea.
Arguing over the relative merits of each of these proposals is part of the democratic process. But who gave Barbara Kerr, Paul Hubbert and the IEA/IFT officials the right to negotiate state policy? If Gov. Schwarzenegger announced a budget proposal after negotiations with WalMart, people would be upset. If Lockheed held meetings with Alabama legislators and then announced a list of corporate tax breaks it desired, voters would be outraged. Gov. Blagojevich’s predecessor was indicted for steering state business to his friends and associates.