This story is interesting. In Chicago, public school teachers are striking. They are demanding a ridiculously high pay increase, 30% over 4 years. They object to a new system for “giving teachers more accountability”.
The salary demand is ridiculous. How many workers got a 30% pay increase over 4 years?
Superficially, you might say “Pay teachers based on standardized tests!” is more accountability. That is merely replacing one bureaucratic rule with another bureaucratic rule. Teachers can “teach for the test”. When I was in 8th grade, my English teacher cheated on a standardized test! He gave us a “practice writing test”. The actual test was exactly the same as the practice test!
“School teacher accountability” is a misleading issue. True accountability would be market competition. As long as State schools are funded via taxation and threat of violence, there will be no accountability. The actual proposal replaces one set of bureaucratic rules with another.
“Charter schools” are another fake reform. “Charter schools” are still funded by taxes and the State. There still is a lot of bureaucratic overhead.
True “public school reform” would be going to a 100% free market system. That isn’t going to happen. A lot of insiders make a lot of money off the corrupt way things are now. They will always block reform.
As long as a service is provided by taxes, there always will be waste and inefficiency. Without the market signal of prices and customers leaving for competitors, it’s impossible to manage a State service efficiently.
In the private sector, the official purpose of a union is to protect workers from greedy employers. In the public sector, who are the workers unionizing against? Private sector unions are unionizing against taxpayers, deciding how much of the stolen tax money they get.
Unions were most effective when they were illegal. Random strikes and slowdowns can be crippling. Now, the union leader is another State bureaucrat protecting his turf. Unionized workers are legally prevented from taking any action, unless they give their employer written advance notice and go through the bureaucratic process first.
State law subsidizes unions. In a “closed shop” state, the union deducts a “representation fee” from each worker’s paycheck, even if he doesn’t join the union. When unionized workers strike, the employer can’t say “You all are fired! I’m hiring replacements!” The State requires employers to hire workers back when the strike ends. That limits the risk of the striking worker, because his job is guaranteed when the strike ends. That also reduces the incentive to hire replacements, because they must be fired when the strike ends.
A pro-State troll says “State schools are free education! That’s wonderful!” Nothing is free. The cost is paid via taxes. People pay for the cost of the education, plus all the waste and inefficiency of the State education bureaucracy. Also, State education is more about teaching people to be complacent slaves. State schools do not teach people to really think independently.
State teachers will never face true accountability, as long as they are funded via taxation/theft. True teacher accountability would be a 100% free market system, where parents directly pay and pick for the school. A pro-State troll might say “Where will parents get the money?”, but taxes would be reduced by an amount greater than the cost of the tuition.
Who are government workers unionizing against? The taxpayers? State law subsides unions. There is the automatic payroll deduction subsidy. Employers can’t fire striking workers and hire permanent replacements.