September 24, 2014

Laurence Tribe On Vergara And Its Larger Issues

By Bellwether

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Writing in USA Today Laurence Tribe doesn’t pull punches.

My support for curtailing teacher tenure and last-in, first-out layoff rules when they put the needs of adults before children is not a departure from my progressive roots. Rather, it is a natural and common-sense outgrowth…

During my career, I’ve written and litigated on behalf of progressive causes such asmarriage equalityreproductive freedom and gun control. I doubt you could find a more fervent defender of teachers and collective bargaining….

But the right to unionize must never become a right to relegate children to permanent second-class citizenship. The outdated California laws the court struck down make no sense for the teachers they were intended to protect, or for the students whose learning is the very reason for the education system’s existence…

Progressives should be part of the solution. We can’t succumb to simplistic defenses of the distorted teacher protection schemes. We must confront the demonstrable effects of these laws. The future of public education and of the teaching profession can be brighter only when we place students’ rights first and foremost on our list of priorities. 

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