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[Susan notes: Read this chilling letter as a reminder of what the corporate world thinks of teachers. We sure have had lots of evidence of their 100 percent success, haven't we?]

Published in News-Journal

To the editor

Contract for teachers

As a retired manager in a large multinational company, I take issue with the comments in Bill Archer's Dec. 18 Community Voices commentary.

Mr. Archer says the Obama administration is "perched to bribe schools . . . into an acceptance of . . . standards and processes that meet the specifications of this administration's corporate masters who want to sculpt American society to serve its own needs."

Nowhere in the press on the Obama/Duncan "Race to the Top" program do I find evidence to suggest that it is based on such specifications. While I might personally commend such a plan, if it did exist it would face a formidable task -- "Racing to the Top" against the downflow of values-based, non-academic ideology in the schools. That's where the attempt at "sculpting" is taking place. And it needs the specifications of teachers, exclusively. Should a parent have the temerity to take issue, there is a firewall established to guard off all opposition.

It is amusing to note that teachers, with their obeisance to this administration, should oppose this new effort just as they have opposed all the other attempts to speed our way to education excellence. I think the real issue for Mr. Archer is rather more the problem that teachers, as always, oppose any form of performance-based evaluation.

In industry, the trainer has one standard -- 100 percent success -- meet the needs of the operation or be gone. The real question for teachers is: Will you sign that contract?

Jim Lemke

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