Thursday, March 06, 2003

Not Helping, Fella

I don't understand what's happening here. The attorney for a group of rural schools, Lewis R. Donelson of powerhouse Tennessee superlawfirm Baker, Donelson, is threatening a State Supreme Court action if the State doesn't cough up money for rural schools ASAP. He made the comments to a State House committee.

This really strikes me as pouring gas on a fire. Bredesen is already putting money into the teacher-pay equalisation issue, and one assumes his coming budget will contain some measures that address the previous October 2002 Supreme Court ruling that kicked the whole mess back into gear.

But Donelson calls Bredesen's additional money "not adequate." Of course not, but it's only intended as a first, stop-gap, step. Even though it's a 12% increase for the least-paid teachers.

Some strategy is underway here. How did poor rural teachers come to afford the State's most prestigious (and priciest) law firm? Or is that the doings of the Tennessee Educator's Association, which the CA doesn't want to remind you of? Why threaten now, when plans are still moving along? Is this to influence the course of decisions? That seems the most likely explanation, of course.

But why adopt the law-suit happy, threatening posture of the Gerald Bonnymans / Tennessee Justice Centers of Tennessee? It's not like we need more of that.

INSTANT UPDATE: Tooling around the 'Net, I found

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