Gov. Wolf vetoes teacher furlough bill

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Gov. Tom Wolf vetoed House Bill 805 Wednesday.

The bill would have allowed teachers to be let go by school districts based on merit instead of seniority.

In a letter to the House of Representatives, Wolf wrote, “This bill relies heavily on a single score from the teacher evaluation system, as opposed to using the entire method of evaluation. At a time when there is bipartisan agreement that we need to reduce our reliance on high-stakes testing, we should not use high-stake test scores as the benchmark for teacher quality.”

Jerry Oleksiak, president of the Pennsylvania State Education Association, applauded Wolf’s veto. Oleksiak said, “The governor was right when he decided to veto the bill. Experience matters in public education. With Gov. Wolf’s veto, lawmakers can get back to work on what Pennsylvanians really want – funding our schools and supporting what really helps kids learn.”

Rep. Stephen Bloom (R-Cumberland) introduced the bill and was disappointed with the governor’s veto. Bloom said, “I question whether the governor even took the time to read the legislation before making the hasty decision to rob our kids of the guarantee that they will get to keep their best teachers. His stated reasons for vetoing this commonsense reform reflect grave misapprehensions on his part about what the bill actually does and does not do.”

To read Gov. Wolf’s full letter, click here.

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