Contract holds back city schools

A new schools chief has come to Baltimore. Andres Alonso’s arrival coincides with the last stages of negotiation of a multi year teachers union contract, which will effectively tie his hands if its provisions are unwise. There is much in the current contract that was carelessly accepted, and much that needs revision. Political realities preclude […]

George Liebmann: Ask Gubernatorial Candidates About Schools and Education

BALTIMORE – Voters must ask the two main candidates for governor these three questions about schools before they vote for either one: Do you favor: Opening up teaching to people not trained in education schools? Pay structures resembling private labor markets, where schools compete? Building-level management of schools? Why are these reforms needed? Schools are […]

The Candidates and Education

The Candidates and Education The Sun and other publications have compared the views of Governor Ehrlich and Mayor O’Malley on education issues, but the comparisons for the most part miss the point. Fundamentally, there are three questions to be asked politicians about school improvement: Do you favor opening up teaching and administration to persons not […]

Martin in Wonderland

The popularity of Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland has lasted for nearly a century, and elaborately annotated editions of it have been published to expose its subtle points to the uninitiated. In Baltimore, an equally classic teachers’ union contract has been maintained intact and virtually unamended throughout the six years of the current O’Malley administration.

Thornton’s False Hope

The five-year Thornton program, which would enhance Maryland’s public school appropriations by $1.3 billion, is a big mistake. The inadequacy of public high school education is the most serious problem this nation confronts, but Thornton is a case of more means worse. Appropriations for future years should be stretched out and conditioned on reforms. Every […]

High School Science and Mathematics in Maryland: A Discussion

MR. GEORGE LIEBMANN (moderator): Roughly 10 of 35 respondents to Calvert’s survey of public college science and math professors referred in one way or another to the problem of recruiting and retaining qualified high school science teachers. The other comments were also very interesting. It is rather commonly put forth as part of an agenda […]

Voucher Politics

The condition of Baltimore’s schools, together with the fact that more than 40% of the parents of Baltimore schoolchildren applied for a limited number of private scholarships would suggest that Baltimore City is a jurisdiction politically ripe for the introduction of vouchers. Several Baltimore political leaders have lent their support to voucher proposals. In 1994, […]

High School Science and Mathematics in Maryland: A Study in Failure

This is the first Calvert Institute study to be issued in 18 months, and reflects the work of a reconstituted Board and new Executive Director. The Institute intends to continue to reproduce in Maryland proposals for market-based reforms that have not received serious discussion, though its basic thrust will seek to promote better government by […]

Baltimore’s Jarndyce v. Jarndyce

Your editor had a look at the federal case file in that most macabre of all cases, Vaughn G. v. Board of Commissioners, involving special education in Baltimore City.(84 Civ.1911 (D.Md.)),which has lasted for 18 years, created two new bureaucracies, cost an estimated $50 million,and provided a Special Master with a $200,000+ salary (To assuage […]

Costs of the Vaughn G Lawsuit

Kalman R. Hettleman is an independent Baltimore education consultant. He was Secretary of Human Resources during the Hughes administration, and is a former member of the Baltimore City School Board. The following discussion of the costs of the Vaughn G. lawsuit is excerpted by permission from a 55-page report, “Still Getting It Wrong: The Continuing […]