In response to a stinging Wall Street Journal editorial, the Knoxville, Chattanooga and Nashville chambers of commerce have sent a letter to the Journal editor to set the record straight regarding the chambers’ position on the controversial school voucher issue.
The Journal accused the chambers of “joining with the teachers unions to kill education vouchers” in an editorial published on May 13 under the headline: “Tennessee’s Chamber Maids”.
The conspiracy charge is “unfounded” and the Journal opinion piece completely misses the need to ensure that school voucher legislation includes public accountability, the chambers’ letter says.
Knoxville area teachers who want to learn more about the business world can sign up for Educators in the Workplace, an Innovation Valley program that allows teachers to spend time with local businesses in the summer.
Companies particpating this year include Capstan, Roane County Medical Center, Oak Ridge National Lab, Toho Tenax, Molecular Pathology Laboratory Network, Inc., 21st Mortgage, Y-12, Standard Aero and Covenant Health.
For more info contact Ahanna Esters at the Knoxville Chamber at 865-246-2658 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Like every good politician, Gov. Bill Haslam kept his remarks brief at today’s Knoxville Chamber event, but his message was clear — education reform is everybody’s business.
Improving Tennessee schools is a priority of the new administration and Haslam asked everyone in the audience to help make it happen.
More than 400 business leaders (including the governor’s dad, James A Haslam II), educators, politicians and at least one professional athlete — former UT quarterback Erik Ainge — attended the event at the Knoxville Convention Center.
Gov. Bill Haslam’s proposal to increase from three to five years the time it takes for new teachers to earn tenure seems reasonable. I’m glad Tennessee’s business community has stepped up to support the idea. However, a more important question is will the business community provide the same leadership on teacher compensation issues?
Talking about teacher pay isn’t going to be popular, given the budget cutting frenzy that grips Nashville — and other state capitals — these days. But it is a necessary discussion. The single, most important factor in providing a quality education is having a great teacher in every classroom. And to attract — and keep — the best teachers, we need to pay them like we mean it.