Tag: Labor

Retiring Teacher Seniority in California? »

California is legendary for its protection of unionized teachers. But if a new measure makes it onto the November ballot, voters would decide whether California teachers would have to bank on more than seniority to keep their jobs. Matt David of StudentsFirst submitted the measure to the Secretary of State last month, where it’s awaiting...
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PISA Results Show We’re a World Leader . . . in Spending, Not Performance »

Spending more and getting less—it’s an increasingly common refrain in education circles these days. Even U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan called the performance of American 15-year-old students, who slipped in the latest international reading, math, and science rankings, a portrait of stagnation. Every three years since 2000 the Organization for Economic Cooperation and...
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Just Say No to Jobs for the Young and Unskilled »

As pictured here, Governor Jerry Brown has signed new minimum wage legislation that ups the minimum productivity to be employed in California to $9 per hour starting next year, and $10 per hour in 2016. Supervisors will also have to increase their productivity if they want to stay employed. The San Francisco Chronicle offers...
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San Francisco Professor Compares BART Transit Workers to Slaves »

The two strikes by Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) unions during the recent contract negotiations have prompted a legislative campaign to ban strikes by public transit workers in California. John Logan, a professor and director of labor and employment studies at San Francisco State University, recently wrote an opinion piece opposing a ban for...
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Generous Contract Offer Still Not Enough for BART Hostage Takers »

On Friday, about 2,400 union workers with the Oakland/San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) system went on strike for the second time in four months. The unions—the Service Employees International Union and Amalgamated Transit Union—represent BART station agents, train operators, mechanics, maintenance workers, and professional staff. The striking workers are unhappy with BART’s...
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Thinking Is Research, Too! »

Bill Parker, an old friend of mine who died in 2000, was director of graduate studies in economics at Yale for thirteen years. He told me once about his struggles with his colleagues, who, he believed, were spending too much time on technique and not enough time on substance in teaching their courses. The...
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California Parents Need Education Options, Not Government “Accountability” »

Overall test scores for some 6 million California students in government-run schools fell this year for the first time in a decade. Rather than drumming up classroom instruction, California officials propose dumping the tests—and this move has fed ed officials fuming. In itself, ditching California’s current Academic Performance Index (API) is a good thing....
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California’s Pension Tsunami Swells as Pension Benefits Surge »

The California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) is the nation’s largest public pension fund. It also has massive unfunded liabilities, as much as $290 billion depending on the calculation method. Many are quick to blame the Great Recession and its low investment returns for the unfunded debts. But new data uncovered by the Sacramento...
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Political Hustle by Fast Food Workers »

Within the past week or so, the employees of fast food restaurants in several major U.S. cities went “on strike” for a day to demand a so-called living wage of $15 per hour, more than twice the current federal minimum hourly wage of $7.25. I will not rehearse the economic analysis of the minimum...
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Time for Taxpayer Protections on California Transportation Projects »

The new span of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge is $5 billion over its original budget and nine years past its initial completion date. Such massive cost overruns and delays have shocked the public but one key question never gets asked, or answered: Why should taxpayers be on the hook for overruns? They shouldn’t,...
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