Why is the teacher being fired?
As the Kansas Supreme Court considers the Legislature’s elimination of due process for K-12 teachers (Sept. 14 Eagle), some state lawmakers have justified their vote by talking about the need to get rid of bad teachers. This is a “red herring.”
Everyone wants to get bad teachers out of the classroom, but that’s not the question. The question is: How do we know that’s the reason a teacher is being fired?
Is the teacher being fired because he is bad? Is the teacher being fired because he annoyed a principal or other administrator (one can still be a good teacher and annoy administration)? Is the teacher being fired because someone’s cousin wants that job? Is the teacher being fired because he has been around long enough to finally make a comfortable living (new teachers right out of college are much cheaper)? Is the teacher active in the teachers’ union (and, thus, involved in preserving the work rights of other teachers)?
An objective process reveals the justification and the standards for the dismissal of any teacher that has demonstrated enough competence to be kept on for three years. Due process provides for the dismissal of “bad” teachers while preserving transparency and trust in the administrators and board members making such decisions.
Terry Sader, Wichita
Pay for mistake
The city of Wichita failed to respond properly to a lawsuit by providing thousands of pages of documents regarding a fatal shooting by a police officer (Sept. 23 Eagle). The city’s legal defense team members were negligent and failed to do their job. Therefore, they should pay the price of the federally imposed sanction.
Let me be more specific: They are receiving paychecks from the city, the taxpayers of the city – me included. I did nothing wrong, and I should not be forced to help pay anybody’s “inexcusable” and unethical job performance. I do not support idiocy nor unethical conduct.
Do I need to get a lawyer to sue the city for misuse of public funds and dereliction of duty? What responsibility is the city’s legal defense team willing to accept? Pay the sanctions out of payroll? Loss of their jobs or titles?
I am tired of paying for official mistakes. Someone is not doing his job and still getting paid for it – sometimes twice, as the job has to be done again all over. It’s like being on public assistance. And I am left holding the bag.
D. Scott Jolly, Wichita
Pompeo stood out
I’m a fairly moderate international studies student at Wichita State University. I attended the recent congressional candidate debate with a very limited knowledge of any of the candidates. Though the debate lacked the drama and excitement we have seen from this cycle’s presidential debates, one thing stood out to me: Rep. Mike Pompeo, R-Wichita, was the only candidate who had any legitimate foreign policy views.
Gordon Bakken, the Libertarian candidate, argued that terrorism is not a significant threat to the United States. Dan Giroux, the Democrat, only committed to “ending senseless wars.”
Like many people my age, I was excited to see an independent on the debate stage. But Miranda Allen let me down, as she took almost no policy positions and committed to nothing at all regarding foreign policy.
This leads me to Pompeo. I may not agree with the sitting congressman on everything, but he outclassed the rest of the stage on foreign policy.
If I need to trust our country’s safety to one person on that stage, Pompeo gets my vote.
Justin Thompson, Wichita
Proud of clinic
The D.L. Tongier Foundation proudly supports the Trust Women Foundation of Wichita. Trust Women’s new clinic in Oklahoma City is state of the art, offering a complete range of reproductive health needs to women in Oklahoma and the surrounding area. It is the first clinic to open in Oklahoma since 1974 that offers a complete range of women’s health care, including personal freedom of choice regarding abortion care.
Julie Burkhart, the founder and CEO of Trust Women, and her wonderful staff are to be congratulated.
Tom Tongier, Altamont
Trustee, D.L. Tongier Foundation
Letters to the Editor
Include your full name, home address and phone number for verification purposes. All letters are edited for clarity and length; 200 words or fewer are best. Letters may be published in any format and become the property of The Eagle.
Mail: Letters to the Editor, The Wichita Eagle, 825 E. Douglas, Wichita, KS 67202
For more information, contact
Phillip Brownlee at 316-268-6262, email@example.com.