One of Gov. Bobby Jindal’s signature laws that makes it harder for teachers to earn and retain a form of job protection, called tenure, was declared unconstitutional Monday.Of course, Jindal will file an appeal, so we'll wait to see how the Louisiana Supreme Court rules. I'm not against educational reform, but I don't want reform in the hands of Jindal and the present legislature. Apparently, they do not do not overly concern themselves with following laws already in the Louisiana Constitution when they write new legislation, and the experiment with vouchers to private schools is not going well. Who advises the governor and the legislators on constitutional issues and apparently tells them what they want to hear, rather than what will pass the constitutional test? I assume Jimmy Faircloth, the lawyer for the state who will lead the appeal, is one of the advisers. Perhaps, if the advisers stepped into the real world and left behind the Republican fantasy world, they'd give wiser advice about legislation. Ah, but then they might be dismissed from their positions by the governor, who brooks little or no dissent within his inner circle.
State District Judge R. Michael Caldwell, of the 19th Judicial District Court in Baton Rouge, who in December upheld the tenure part of a sweeping education law, reversed himself after hearing new arguments from both sides.
The ruling was a victory for the Louisiana Federation of Teachers. The LFT filed the lawsuit and said that the 2012 measure would essentially end teacher tenure in Louisiana.
The decision also could throw a wrench into sweeping new teacher evaluations, which are under way in public schools for the first time.
State Rep. John Bel Edwards, D-Amite and an opponent of the tenure law, said Monday that, during House debate on the measure, he and other opponents warned that it was legally flawed but that Jindal and his legislative allies “ramrodded it through.”Jindal is good at ramrodding legislation through. His policy: Pass the legislation quickly before too many people have a chance to examine it closely and find the flaws.