ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota Senate has approved a two-year pay freeze for employees in Minnesota public and charter schools.

The bill’s sponsor, Sen. Dave Thompson, says that without the freeze, districts would be forced to lay off some teachers so they could afford to pay the raises for the rest. It does not apply to current contracts.

The Lakeville Republican’s bill also repeals an annual Jan. 15 deadline for when a school district must reach a collective bargaining agreement with its teachers, or face heavy fines.

The Senate approved the bill 36-29 on Thursday. A companion bill is moving through the House.

The bill prohibits school employees from striking over the freeze. The state teachers union, Education Minnesota, opposed the bill, saying districts should negotiate their contracts without state intervention.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments (14)
  1. Smartie says:

    Wow! Glad I got out of teaching and went into the private work sector!

  2. retired educator says:

    Yeah, now let’s encourage people from the private sector to go into teaching. Let’s make it easier for them to get certified. Then, they can be laid off for the first 5 years thay teach, and ,oby the way, no raises for at least 5 years. That should really help get private sector management individuals excited!!!!! Oh, by the way, if you get laid off you are eligible for unemployment, but if they call you back, you have to pay it all back.

    1. Wow says:

      did you have to retire because of early onset dementia? that made no sense!

      1. Been there! says:

        It made perfect sense! As someone that was a corp. manager that is now working on my teaching lic. This short cut to lic. approach is NOT good. I was a successful manager and decided to go into teaching for its non financial rewards but don’t confuse this with not wanting to make a REAL livable wage. I’m enrolled in the one of many M.A.ED./Initial lic. programs offered at many of the colleges in the state. I would advise anyone with a B.A or B.S. to do this because in order to make a decent income in teaching you must have a Masters (76% of Minnesota teachers have one which on average means that a teacher makes 47K to 56K a year depending on contract and time in the profession). This is much less than I made as a manager with my BA BTW) and many people that are qualified to teach in this state are having difficulty finding their first teaching job that will only be good for one year. The last thing the state needs are less qualified people flooding the field. What this is really about is basic labor economics at its most fundamental level. It is the mindset of “we don’t care who teaches as long as they do it cheaply”. I know this mindset; it was and is the one that I work with in the private sector. I didn’t hire the most qualified person I hired the one that could do the job the cheapest because my bonus and my boss’ bonus depended on it. That’s the truth and the rest of you in the private sector know that’s how compensation works these days but teaching is not an economic profit or loss situation. It’s ridiculous to apply private sector management principles because the role of education is not to make a profit to acquire wealth. No, it is fundamentally a human situation that speaks at a higher level. It speaks to stewardship of young people and to the parents that entrust me to educate their children in partnership with them. So the question to parents is who would you like to teach your child? And a cautionary word to those of you who work in the private sector and are thinking about teaching, even though you may work for bosses, coworkers and subordinates that act like children, you can’t fire a real child that isn’t learning. You need to find away to get them there and that’s the hard part of teaching. That’s what makes it a profession.

  3. Disgusted in MN says:

    On the same day this in annouced, the Dome votes to approve an $18 million dollar “temporary” fix. Where are our priorities in MN? This is so pathetic.

    1. G says:

      That’s paid for by insurance “Disgusted”

  4. Disgusted in MN says:

    In a statement, the Vikings said they support the roof replacement but said it “is not a long-term stadium solution” for them. They said they intended to continue pursuing state legislation to pay for and build a new stadium.

    Who do you think will pay for this stadium “G”? Taxpayers. The same people who’s insurance premiums go up everytime a claim is made.

    1. Popgunpapa says:

      Discusted in MN.
      Sober up. You don’t have a clue what you are talking about.
      You are rambling along with out any rational, informed thought.

  5. Good Grief says:

    Wow, our government is lowering the standards to be a teacher (New pathways to teaching) in efforts to help out Teach for America, putting these teachers into the lower income areas. And you think this is going to HELP the achievement gap??

    And now, further still, disrespecting them with pay freezes. We just took a voluntary pay freeze for 2 years in our district. Why not reward the districts who are taking the steps to solve problems locally?

    Republicans, WHAT ABOUT LOCAL CONTROL??? Please help!!

  6. Disrespectful says:

    Too bad teachers, maybe dedicating your lives to making our country a better place is not a respected profession after all? Oh well, it must not be that big of a deal to attract the best and the brightest to a profession that gets constantly slammed in the media. Do you have any idea how much work it is to educate 170 kids per day? Correcting their papers, providing extra help before and after school (not paid), calling and emailing parents outside the work day to fit their schedules… Yup! Those greedy teachers! What the media does not tell is the fact that most teachers have taken a pay cut for the past 5 plus years!

  7. worthlessteacher says:

    This just in !!!!!!! “MN teachers finally punished for destroying the U.S. economy!” In a related story, investment bankers and hedge fund managers enjoy another year of record bonuses for their pivotal role in educating America’s youth…..
    If they are hungry, let them eat chalk……

  8. insignificant says:

    how about everyone just pull their little ones right outta the public schools and home school ’em…let them worthless administrators sweat out some hard times for once,eh? …what good is it all doing for society anyways?….the way this worlds going,perhaps survival skills may be more appropriate anyways,eh?

  9. Robert Johannesburg says:

    This is pretty intense. My friend in Minneapolis has been trying to decide if she should pull her kids out of regular, public school and put them in one of the charter schools Minnesota is known for. She’s heard a lot of good things about them, but she was raised in public schools, and so she feels some loyalty there. With all that’s happening, I can see why she’s having a conundrum.

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