Jeff Atwater, education visionary
Jeff Atwater, education visionary

Attorney Teams Up With Banker to Tell Teachers How to Teach

John Thrasher and Jeff Atwater worked as an attorney and a banker, respectively, before they became state senators and declared themselves experts on how to educate your Florida child. You see, it's quite simple: Good teachers inspire students who score high on standardized tests; bad teachers cause students to score low. And those teachers should be paid accordingly.

That's the premise of Senate Bill 6, but it still seems soft. We need reform that holds teachers more "accountable." Here's an idea: Take the average score on the FCAT, and for every point a student scores below that average, the teacher should be docked $10.

If that education reform doesn't work, the state can send those bad teachers to a "camp" for what we can call "re-education." I hear there's cheap space at the base in Guantanamo Bay where we can impart these valuable lessons to Florida teachers.

If that teacher's students are still posting low scores, maybe he or she can benefit from extraordinary rendition.

Clearly, these inducements will attract the nation's best teachers to Florida -- educators so sure of their talents that they'd be willing to risk starvation and torture. They'd teach like their lives depend on it -- and frankly, maybe they do.

The Florida Democrats believe that Senate Bill 6 is cruel to Florida teachers and have launched a grassroots campaign to defeat it. But screw 'em! Florida likes the tough-love approach with its teachers, and that's what they get for electing Republican governors and a Republican legislature.


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