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ERIC Number: ED501842
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Apr
Pages: 8
Abstractor: ERIC
Teacher Labor Agreements: Formulas for Flexibility or Failure? Education Outlook. No. 3
Hess, Frederick M.; Loup, Coby
American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
Some four decades after the advent of collective bargaining in public education, the labor agreements it has produced now touch virtually all aspects of school district operations, from how teachers are paid and assigned to how they can be evaluated, how or whether they can be disciplined or fired, when and where they complete professional development, and how much time off they are allowed for union activities. In "The Leadership Limbo," the authors of this issue of "Education Outlook" examined how much flexibility school leaders enjoy on key dimensions of management in America's fifty largest school districts. Culling data from the National Council on Teacher Quality's collective bargaining database, and sorting them out into twelve key components within three categories--teacher compensation, personnel policies, and work rules--they graded each district on a scale of A to F based on the degree of flexibility it granted school leaders, allowing readers to identify and compare the most and least management-friendly contract language on a variety of important issues. Their study find that the problem is less that collective bargaining agreements prohibit leaders from acting and more that they are murky; they send mixed signals about the bounds of permissible action; or they conflict with federal, state, judicial, or district practices and policies. There is a need to move on multiple fronts to promote flexibility for district and school leaders--and to ensure that leaders are prepared for their roles and held accountable for using their authority effectively. Four recommendations based on their research are presented. (Contains 2 tables and 6 notes.)
American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research. 1150 Seventeenth Street NW, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 202-862-5800; Fax: 202-862-7177; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A