Today, common sense beat out special interests.
Rather than giving into union demands, state Democratic leaders announced their decision to not seek an override of any of the bills vetoed by Governor Dannel Malloy.
This is good news, since one of the bills in question was HB 6977 – a bill that would have needlessly imposed restrictive qualifications on who could be appointed as state education commissioner.
The state’s largest teacher’s union, the Connecticut Education Association, spent the past week lobbying state leaders to override Malloy’s veto.
The legislation would have required future Education Commissioners to hold an advanced degree in education, have five years of classroom experience and three years experience leading either a school or school district – without allowing waivers for other relevant experience.
As noted in a previous Education Bridgeport! article, these new requirements would have limited the pool of candidates, discounting highly qualified individuals merely because of arbitrary qualifications.
Not surprisingly, the staunchest supporters of this legislation were state teachers unions, who would clearly benefit from the fact that these restrictions would nearly guarantee the state’s top education leader would be from their ranks.
As Chris Powell at the Journal Inquirer put it, they were trying to “prevent any outsider from ever upsetting public education’s status quo.”
In other words, had state legislative leaders given into union demands, the union would essentially hold a monopoly on the future of education policy in Connecticut.
This isn’t just a victory for the governor – this is a victory for the children of Connecticut.
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