As the deadline approaches for applications to the $4.4 billion federal Race to the Top program, educators are paying close attention to the ways their profession will change.
As Advocate reporter Will Sentell writes here, the first effects of what is called R2T will be felt in school systems that actually receive part of the grant money. Eventually, though, the reforms that come about in response to R2T are expected to be implemented statewide.
For that reason, LFT is determined to play a significant role in the development and implementation of R2T in the state. To get the money, districts must agree to changes in the way teachers are evaluated and compensated.
The union is working to ensure that teacher evaluations and pay are not based solely on test results, but on a range of criteria that can take into account factors that are beyond a teacher's control. Those issues can range from the physical condition of the school to discipline issues, to adequacy of resources such as textbooks and educational materials.