Union debate grips Minnesota Capitol, but budget measures squeaking by

  • Article by: Baird Helgeson, Rachel E. Stassen-Berger and Jennifer Brooks , Star Tribune staff writers
  • Updated: May 20, 2013 - 5:17 AM

Leaders working on budget measures; $15.7 billion education bill approved.

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brianjapanMay. 19, 1310:19 PM

You can spend a million dollars per kid and the graduation rate will still be the same.

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asdubiakMay. 19, 1311:21 PM

Awesome more union paybacks. Its always been the same and the graduation rates never improve. The MEA is the biggest scam going and people buy into it over and over again. Hats off to private school teachers.

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jimmyjames76May. 19, 1311:49 PM

Schools have been taking a back seat to everything else for awhile, so I don't really have a problem with giving them more funding. Especially funding for basic classroom needs. This seems like more money than is needed, but education is a worthy investment. I'd much rather have money spent on schools than supporting dead beats that have no interest in holding down a job or making sure prisoners have nice TVs (unfortunately no one, democrat or republican, wants to address that problem). I do agree that throwing money at it won't solve graduation rates. Some kids have horrible parents, don't care, and having pencils and current text books isn't going to change that fact. If it better prepares the kids that care then it seems worth it.

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potter101May. 20, 1312:26 AM

The biggest threat to the 1% is unions, so then of course the biggest threat to the regressives is unions.

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tooty123May. 20, 1312:31 AM

bill that will give most parents access to free, all-day kindergarten beginning next year."----Most parents??? Why not all parents access to free, all-day kindergarten. No one should have to pay for a responsibility of the state to educate a child! Kindergarten is not you "old" kindergarten of counting to 10, know your colors and tie your shoes! They are learning basic arithmetic, vocabulary and entrance into basic reading. All of which will have and enormous asset in the future grades. We need to catch children early and not have them failing in grades 1,2, and 3. These are the MOST important years of their schooling and should be the core of our education policies. All-day kindergarten should be mandatory in Minnesota! Let's get into the 21st century!

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brokenclockMay. 20, 13 1:34 AM

Here we go again. Let's do it for the children. More money for education. More computers. Smaller class size. Higher standards for teachers. Yada yada yada. It's like re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. Education's dirty little secret, not just here but everywhere, is that American kids have become almost unteachable. They simply don't care about getting an education and it isn't a priority for families. They all talk a good game but that's all it is - talk. I taught in a thatched hut in Thailand for a year. I had a chalkboard and some heavily used textbooks. Occasionally, the resident cobra would pay a visit. Those kids were sponges for learning. They were dirty, barefoot and hungry and they ran circles around the vast majority of students I ever had in the US. You don't need a lot of money or fancy facilities to educate people. You need motivated learners and that starts with families getting their priorities straight. Until then, we're just throwing away our money.

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erikj3May. 20, 13 2:03 AM

Why would anyone have a problem with all day kindergarten? It is just common sense! As for raising taxes on smokers and the wealthier among us, go for it.

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alanam8May. 20, 13 2:05 AM

Not surprised to read that "Eliot Seide, executive director of AFSCME Council 5, leaned over the railing from the gallery above, surveying the deliberations." After all, his union is slated to earn a windfall in mandatory new dues when this thing passes. If this were a bill to funnel 21,000 new dues paying members into an organization that funds GOP political campaigns, AFSCME would be the first organization to denounce. I am a lifelong DFL voter, and this makes me sick.

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jimteacherMay. 20, 13 4:47 AM

“The unions are the worst thing that ever happened to education because it’s not a meritocracy. It turns into a bureaucracy, which is exactly what has happened. The teachers can’t teach and administrators run the place and nobody can be fired. It’s terrible.” – Steve Jobs

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huggybear28May. 20, 13 6:40 AM

The unions need to learn when they are overreaching. The taxpayers will fight back (See Wisconsin). WEAC (WI Teacher's Union) was the most powerful group in the capital for many years spending $3 mil+ a year in lobbying alone. They pushed their demands too far and instead of getting their demands were rendered post Walker's union bill irrelevant. Some people never learn...

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