Providence, RI School Supt. Frances Gallo says she did not have a choice. Federal law requires that states identify their lowest-performing 5 percent of schools and fix them. Gallo came up with a plan: teachers would receive additional training and take part in afterschool sessions, for which they'd be paid $30 an hour.
Gallo also asked teachers to do a few things for no additional pay, like spending an extra 25 minutes in school. I'd think dedicated teachers in struggling schools would be willling to spend a little more time with their students. But these teachers are in a union. Their reaction?
Union officials said they wanted to be paid for more of the duties and wanted to receive a higher pay rate –– $90 per hour.
So Gallo, unlike most officials who just cave in to public sector union demands because a) it's not their money and b) it's easier to give in, took a novel approach. She fired the lot of them.
Gallo mailed letters Thursday afternoon to every teacher at Central Falls High School informing them that she is recommending their termination at the end of the current school year.
Wow. Gallo is a good role model for students.
The school board votes on Gallo's recommendation today. I wonder if its members will show the same backbone Gallo demonstrated. Stay tuned.