Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Facts on Ohio Senate Bill 5-Ohio Issue 2

Myth: "Senate Bill 5 enacts reasonable reforms by only requiring public employees to contribute 10% of their salaries to their retirements and pay 15% of their health care costs." 
·  Ohio Senate Bill 5 is 304 pages long. Retirement contributions and health care costs are only a tiny portion of the changes enacted by this bill. In reality, it gives governing bodies executive power (as they should have) as well as judicial power in the labor dispute resolution process. This violates constitutional checks and balances by ending the separation of powers. (SB5 is 304 Pages Long)
·  Ohio Republican State Senator Tim Grendell stated that Senate Bill 5 was unconstitutional before the Ohio Senate on March 30, 2011 based on the 1989 Ohio Supreme Court case City of Rocky River v. State Employment Relations Board. (Source
Myth: “Private sector workers in the state have faced cutbacks, while public workers haven’t sacrificed anything.”
·  State and local employees have accepted wage freezes, health premium increases, mandatory furloughs, and other concessions in response to economic conditions. (James J. Brudney of the American Constitution Society)
Myth:Salaries and benefits paid to public employees are out of line with the private sector.”
·  Public employees make 6.8% less than their private sector counterparts (Economic Policy Institute, Rutgers University)
·  According to the Wall Street Journal, teachers work the same number of hours as the average full-time worker in the United States (Source: Teacher Hours)
Myth: “It isn’t fair that taxpayers pay for teachers’ retirement.”
·  Teachers earn compensation in two forms: cash salaries and deferred salaries. The cash salary is their paycheck. 10% of each paycheck is deducted and contributed to their retirement. An amount equal to 14% of the cash salary is contributed on behalf of the employee as deferred salary to their retirement. Teachers’ accepted deferred salaries in lieu of cash salary increases. (Rick Ungar of Forbes magazine)
Myth: “We should pay teachers based on merit because this will encourage teachers to work harder and perform better.”
·  Value-added formulas for teacher performance based on standardized test are not statistically valid and reliable. (National Research Council, Economic Policy Institute, New York Times, Washington Post, National Education Policy Center, Rethinking Schools)
·  Merit pay systems for teachers have been tried in New York City, Chicago, Washington D.C. and Nashville where studies have shown that they did not increase student achievement (Mathematica Policy Research, Economic Policy Institute, National Educational Policy Center, Vanderbilt University)
·  Value-added measures based on standardized narrow the curriculum and work against creativity, innovation and intrinsic motivation (Drive by Daniel Pink)
·  Requiring administrators to evaluate every teacher for at least 30 minutes twice every year will increase administrative costs and mean that more money is spent on administrative costs instead of less.
·  According to University of Washington economist Dan Goldhaber, about 60% of student achievement is attributable to non-school factors, such as family income and poverty—factors that the teacher cannot control
·  Research has shown that collaboration among teachers improves the quality of instruction, but merit-pay systems based on standardized test scores for the students of individual teachers creates incentives opposed to collaboration and cooperation
·  Merit pay based on standardized tests punishes teachers for working with students who have disabilities or are disadvantaged
Myth: “Charter schools outperform traditional public schools.”
• According to a 2009 Stanford University study, only 17% of charter schools perform better than public schools while 37% of charter schools perform worse (Stanford University CREDO Study)
• According to 2006 Ohio state report cards, 1 in 2 charter schools were either in academic emergency or academic watch, while only 1 in 11 traditional public school buildings were in academic emergency or academic watch (Stanford University CREDO Study in Ohio)
• Three out of four public schools are rated excellent or effective, while only one in six charter schools are rated excellent or effective (Ohio Department of Education)
Sources Online:
  This is a link to a sheet that explains facts about Ohio Senate Bill 5. I would like to thank everyone who contributed to the development of this document. Feel free to share it, download it and pass it along.

On Scribd:
Myths vs Facts on Ohio Senate Bill 5

On Google Docs:
Myths vs. Facts on Ohio Senate Bill 5