- In Bradley County, Wacker has received 10,000 applications and made 130 hires. [Chattanooga Times Free Press, 8/17/11]
- In Knox County, 700 students attend a jobs fair at UT Knoxville [Daily Beacon, 8/26/11]
- In Robertson County, 400 people turned out for a job fair [NewsChannel5.com, 8/17/11]
- In Hamilton County, Amazon.com received 4,300 applications in two days. [Memphis Business Journal, 5/18/11]
- In Rutherford County, 800 people apply for teaching positions. [Daily News Journal, 5/15/11]
- In Knox County, Jobs News’ drew more than 1,400 job seekers. [WVLT, 5/4/11]
- In Tullahoma, 60 people applied for 10 jobs — at McDonalds. [Tullahoma News & Guardian, 4/28/11]
- In Montgomery County, “thousands of people” attend a two-day job fair in Clarksville. [The Leaf-Chronicle, 4/28/11]
- In Shelby County, more than 20,000 job-seekers applied over 14 days to work at a brewery that plans to hire 500 workers over the next five years. [The Memphis Commercial Appeal, 4/13/11]
Archive for the ‘unemployment’ Category
One second Governor Bill Haslam applauds Tennessee teachers. The next moment Mr. Haslam subtly paints Tennessee teachers as broadly ineffective.
Recently Mr. Haslam gave us more of the later.
Addressing a group of young women, the governor said that class size doesn’t matter. He followed it up by saying, “having a great teacher with 25 students is better than having a mediocre teacher with 18 students.” [Chattanooga Times Free Press, 6/1/11]
Doubling down on this thinking, Mr. Haslam said his goal is “to push our education [system] toward making sure we have a great teacher in front of every classroom regardless of the classroom size.” [Chattanooga Times Free Press, 6/1/11]
Is the hunt for “great teachers” an implication that the majority of Tennessee teachers are not “great teachers” — regardless of classroom size?
And he says there’s no morale problem.
The Chattanooga Times Free Press chastised Haslam for his plan to increase classroom size:
In fact, relying on the myth that “quality teachers” are all that matters will only add to teachers’ burdens.
Gov. Haslam’s comments came in an address in Nashville to hundreds of rising seniors attending the Volunteer Girls State leadership program. He also used the “quality teachers” theme to justify the authority he successfully secured from the Legislature this spring to tighten teacher tenure standards.
He said those standards, which both extended the time needed for teachers to receive tenure from three to five years, and made tenure more conditional, were key to his efforts to “push our education (system) toward making sure we have a great teachers in front of every classroom regardless of the classroom size.”
That’s gimmickry baloney. In reality, his tenure bill, like his charter school initiative and the Legislature’s new ban on teachers’ bargaining rights and political action committees, are political ploys, not education improvements. As a practical matter, it will take much more to pull Tennessee’s public education ranking out of the cellar.
While no one denies that a great teacher can do wonders in a child’s education, lower class sizes can have an across the board positive impact on student achievement.
The amount of research done on the effects of class size is extensive, and all of it comes to the same conclusion. Smaller class size is a concrete, measurable, and replicable way to increase student achievement.
Mr. Haslam’s comments open the door for many questions about his education agenda for next legislative session:
» Do you plan on increasing class size limits or eliminating the caps?
» Do you plan on extending the school year?
» Do you plan on pay raises for “great” teachers?
» Who decides which teachers are “great”?
» How would you entice more of these “great teachers” to Tennessee? Pay? Benefits? Job security?
» Larger classrooms means fewer teachers. What is the plan for firing teachers who are not “great”? Should mass layoffs be on the table?
» Is the relentless “reforming” of education an effort to solve a problem that could be caused, indirectly, by other factors you’re not addressing, i.e. 300,000 jobless Tennesseans, poverty, etc.?
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 17, 2011
$60M in Federal Jobless Benefits for 28,000 Tennesseans Lost if Republicans Fail to Act
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee Democratic Party Chairman Chip Forrester issued the following statement urging Gov. Bill Haslam and Republican legislators to pass law to reinstate jobless benefits for 28,000 Tennesseans:
Partisan politics shouldn’t threaten the economic future of 28,000 Tennesseans who can’t find work due to a recession that was no fault of their own.
Gov. Bill Haslam and Republican legislators haven’t lived up to their promise to create jobs, and now their negligence is jeopardizing critical financial support that is keeping children fed, bills paid and families out of foreclosure.
We’ve seen harmful bills that rob citizens and teachers of their rights get all the attention this session. Now Republicans have a chance to make an actual difference by fixing their screw up.
Mr. Haslam needs to prove he’s serious about governing – not scoring political points. The livelihood of nearly 30,000 citizens is on the line. Republicans owe it to these hurting families to act responsibly.
US Department of Labor estimates unemployment benefits give taxpayers a 2-to-1 return on investment. For the modest expenditure of less than $2 million, Tennessee would receive $60 million, which translates to $120 million of economic activity, according to a study commissioned by the labor department. The study suggests these dollars are injected quickly into the local economy and could potentially add more than $5 million directly to state sales tax collections. [US Department of Labor, 11/10]
Democrats scramble on to revive jobless benefits that Republicans failed to prioritize. Republicans, who control the General Assembly and set the legislative schedule, failed to pass a law to extend unemployment benefits for 28,000 jobless Tennesseans. Now legislative Democrats are pushing to reinstate the benefits, with House and Senate committees scheduled to meet Monday to consider last-minute bills to resurrect the program. Success would bring nearly $60 million in federal funds to pay up to 20 more weeks of benefits for Tennesseans unable to find jobs in a still-fragile economy. But it’s unclear whether Republican Gov. Bill Haslam and the Republican-controlled General Assembly will go along. [Chattanooga Times Free Press, 5/15/11]
GOP Sen. Mark Norris says Haslam administration signaled they wouldn’t pursue bill to extend jobless benefits. Senate Majority Leader Mark Norris said today that state Employment Security Administrator Don Ingram last week “made it very clear that the administration’s position at least had been that they didn’t intend to pursue it.” [Chattanooga Times Free Press, 5/16/11]