Alexander Says Obamacare Is Creating More Substitute Teachers For Schools

Thursday, January 2, 2014

U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander, a former U.S. Secretary of  Education, Thursday said that as school starts back up in 2014, Obamacare is forcing cuts in hours for employees, such as substitute teachers, in at least 11 Tennessee school districts “and likely many more,” harming students’ education in the process.  

“Individuals, families and businesses aren’t the only ones facing financial challenges because of Obamacare – Tennessee schools are also being hit hard by higher health insurance costs that are forcing districts to cut jobs or hours,” Senator Alexander, the senior Republican on the Senate education committee, said. “Obamacare has forced schools to save costs with more part-time employees, from substitute teachers to coaches to custodial and administrative staff.”

A major driver of school districts’ problems, Senator Alexander said, is an Obamacare mandate requiring employers to provide more expensive health insurance to anyone working 30 hours or more per week. As a result, many districts are being forced to employ more part-time workers, and to keep their hours low, to save on costs.

Senator Alexander said, “Schools should be free to make decisions based on what will help students learn what they need to know, not on how to cope with Obamacare’s burdensome and expensive mandates.”  

School districts reporting fiscal challenges because of Obamacare include: Carter County, Clarksville, Franklin Special School District, Johnson City, Maury County, Oneida Special School District, Rutherford County, Scott County, Stewart County, Washington County and Wilson County.

Maury County Schools, south of Nashville, for example, is limiting its substitute teachers to no more than 28 hours per week. One school board member told the local news: “Students struggle enough having one substitute teacher, but then now we’re going to have to possibly split the substitute time between two substitute teachers. It just makes it hard on the students to learn.”

Lee Catches World Youth Fly Fishing Champion To Lead New Team

Lee University signed Mason Sims, the 2015 world champion U.S. Youth Fly Fishing Team member and silver medalist, on Thursday to Lee’s recently established fly fishing team.  The university created their fly fishing program in spring 2014 in conjunction with the International Federation of Fly Fishers. Dr. Guy DeLoach, associate professor of business, heads the program.  ... (click for more)

Lee Announces 2016 Rymer Scholarship Winners, Charles Paul Conn And F.J. Lee Awards

Lee University announced the 2016 Rymer Scholarship winners. Three Gold Scholars, three Silver Scholars, and three Bronze Scholars were presented awards at the annual Rymer Scholars banquet at Lee on Friday.  The scholarships are awarded annually by the Rymer Foundation, established by Hoyle Rymer and his father, the late Robert Rymer. The awards honor exceptional achievement ... (click for more)

Representative Jimmy Duncan Endorses Donald Trump For President

Representative John J. Duncan, Jr., one of the most senior Republicans in the House and the only Republican remaining in Congress who voted against the Iraq War today endorsed Donald Trump for president. Rep. Duncan said, “With only four percent of the world’s population, we buy 25 percent of the world’s goods. Every country wants into our markets. We have tremendous leverage ... (click for more)

5 Considered For Cleveland City Manager Position

Five names were selected  Friday  by a citizens advisory committee to send to the Cleveland City Council for consideration as the next Cleveland city manager. The five are Angie Carrier, Joe Fivas, Mark Reeter, Seth Sumner and Julie Underwood. The list is being sent in alphabetical order so no one has an advantage when the city council considers the candidates. ... (click for more)

Jill Levine Is An Educational Rock Star

No one has covered the Hamilton County Department of Education drama better than Roy Exum.  Thank you, Roy, but I take issue with your unnamed sources.  Professional jealousy and sour grape darts should not be anonymous.   HCDE is so dysfunctional, and there is good cause to place this public organization under a microscope, dissect it into pieces and discard all ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Settle It With A Vote

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary, which I consider a pretty good authority on what words really mean, defines “freedom” in this way:  “The quality or state of being free: such as, (a) the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action; (b) liberation from slavery or restraint or from the power of another; (c) independence -- the quality or state of being exempt ... (click for more)