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Evidence suggests that moving away from seniority pay improves teacher quality

Public policy must deal with the world as it is, not as we would wish it to be. As in any profession, some teachers are better than others. We might wish that more effective teachers paid the same as less effective teachers would work just as hard, but theory, and new evidence from Wisconsin, suggest that this is not the case. If we want to get the best out of our teachers, we need a labor market structured to encourage that. ...

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MN Teachers’ Union Calls Attention to Center’s Employee Freedom Project and Billboards

Education Minnesota President Denise Specht uses her column in the union's publication, Minnesota Educator to call out the Center’s EducatedTeachersMN project and its electronic billboards that welcomed union officials and delegates to the NEA's national convention held in Minneapolis this summer. Specht’s criticism of the signage? The blackboard background....

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Minnesota Needs to Address Labor Shortage in Education Curricula

Why do most schools around the country have a three-month break every summer? The nine-month school year was adopted over a century ago, so children could work on the farms during prime harvesting months. This is an example of the public education system adapting to the economy. The top priority for any public education system should be preparing the students to be productive members of society, including preparing them to join the labor force. Currently, one of the top issues with the Minnesota economy is a labor shortage. Not just any labor, but high skilled labor in technical fields that require...

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U of MN struggles to attract local students. Drafted pronoun policy isn’t a good recruitment strategy.

Fall 2018 classes will begin September 4 at the University of Minnesota, but enrollment data shows the university loses more local college-bound students to neighboring states than it attracts. The U is considering a new "gender identity" policy that would require students and professors to use the names, gender identities and pronouns specified to them or risk discrimination or harassment charges and face potential punitive measures including academic expulsion or termination from employment.  ...

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Teachers want unions to focus more on professional needs, but are they listening?

Thanks to Janus, government unions have an opportunity to reboot for the better, but they are faced with a choice: Will they continue prioritizing political objectives unrelated to meeting the needs of their members? Or will they be more attentive and responsive to professional interests?...

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Teachers’ Unions Scramble to Remain Relevant

School may be out but the recent Supreme Court ruling that public employees cannot be forced to pay union fees has cut the teachers unions' summer vacation short. Kate Walsh of the National Council on Teacher Quality explains why in a pointed column on the opinion pages of the Star Tribune. After the high court sided with Janus in Janus vs. AFSCME, public-sector workers will no longer be required to contribute to their unions, something nearly half of all states — including Minnesota — require regardless of whether teachers choose to belong to the union. The nation’s largest union, the National...

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Billboards Work!

The National Education Association, the country's largest teachers' union, held its annual convention in Minneapolis this year, beginning in late June and ending in early July. The convention was attended by 8,000 or more delegates from around the country. It began just a day or two after the U.S. Supreme Court issued its ruling in Janus v. AFSCME, holding that governments cannot force public employees to contribute to unions against their will. We wrote here about the fact that we greeted NEA delegates with two billboards, one on Highway 35W and one on Highway 94: Were the billboards effective? This is...

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Anti-Janus Outrage: Allegations of Racism, Authoritarianism Alleged by Desperate Unions

In the wake of the Supreme Court's landmark Janus ruling, unions are in a state of outrage as workers are now allowed to leave. Pro-union media is raining down accusations of racism and authoritarianism on the part of SCOTUS, in attempt to to frighten union workers into maintaining their memberships. Fortunately, the facts remain, and after the media hype subsides, long term positive change is slated to take place. ...

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Lawsuit Charges U of M Bias Against Conservative Ben Shapiro

Conservative speaker Ben Shapiro just might get the last word in against the University of Minnesota after all--in a federal courtroom. The U of M refused to let the popular young speaker appear on the main campus in February, citing public safety concerns in off-loading the event to a venue with half the capacity on the St. Paul campus. American Experiment was among those warning that university administrators were teeing up a potentially lucrative First Amendment lawsuit at the expense of Minnesota taxpayers and free speech. The University of Minnesota continues to go out of its way to marginalize conservatives on campus. Perhaps the...

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