All of the Indiana teachers who traveled to Florida for spring
break should have picked up a local newspaper to read about Florida's
Senate Bill 6: It is likely their future.
Gov. Mitch Daniels and State Superintendent Tony Bennett have been
enamored with education reform measures coming out of the Sunshine
State. Look for a teacher tenure bill to pop up in the next session of
the Indiana General Assembly, particularly if Republicans win a
majority in the Indiana House.
In brief, the legislation in Florida would tie future salary
increases to evaluations based on student test scores. Teachers hired
after July will receive only a one-year, probationary contract. For
the next four years, their contracts would be renewed at the
discretion of the superintendent.
Florida teachers aren't accepting the plan with open arms. More than
6,000 Miami teachers participated in a sick-out on Monday, with more
than 1,000 teachers staging a public protest. Gov. Charlie Crist has
received more than 35,000 calls, letters and e-mails in opposition to
the plan. He faces a Friday deadline for a veto, and intense political
pressure as he seeks the GOP nomination for U.S. Senate.
Interestingly, the bill's opponents include Tea Party activists, who
oppose it on the grounds that it represents consolidation and larger
"Why aren't Republicans acting like Republicans?" asked one Tea Pary
leader. "How can you say you're for limited government if you support