This editorial will appear in tomorrow’s print edition.
Funding for public education is a precious and increasingly scarce – especially in Tacoma, whose school system faces an estimated $13 million shortfall next year.
That’s why everything the school district spends money on must be questioned, including programs embedded in union contracts – especially teacher training.
As The News Tribune’s Debbie Cafazzo reported Sunday, Tacoma Public Schools expects to spend $7.3 million on professional development in its 2011-2012 budget, $6 million of it for teachers.
Most of that money would be spent compensating teachers – at 1.25 times their normal pay – for seven days worth of training offered outside school hours. These “optional days” are provided by the district as part of its agreement with the Tacoma Educators Association.
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