Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Where Are The Education Reformers On Collective Bargaining Rights?

Russo says they're either silent and hoping nobody notices or making lame one sentence comments and hoping nobody notices.

Well, of course.

Obama, Duncan, Rhee, Eduwonk, Gates, Broad - these people don't want a powerful teachers union with the right to collectively bargain.

Rather, they want a defanged union easily manipulated to "collaborate" with the feds, states and districts to enable the continued privatization and charterization of the school system.

Their silence on the Wisconsin fight - or in Obama's and Duncan's case, their essential silence since the words they issued in "support" of unions were NOT followed up by any meaningful actions - exposes them for who they are and the policies they want.

They are corporatists looking to bust the unions, disempower working and middle class people and impose their privatization and charterization policies on the entire country.

As for the DFER's "supporting" teachers rights to collectively bargain and be part of the union, well, they may SAY that's what they support, but their actions and efforts say otherwise.

I have yet to see the DFER's miss an opportunity to support the closing of a union school, the firing of unionized teachers and the replacement of both with non-unionized charter schools and help.

"Support" like the DFER's offer, unions can do without.

As for Obama and Duncan, smarmy arrogant pricks that they are, they probably think they've walked the tightrope just right here.

They undoubtedly think by issuing words of support, they have fooled the union people into thinking they're on the union side, but by taking no meaningful action to help the unions in this fight, they have signaled to the corporatists just whose side they're on.

Don't think the more discerning members of the teaching profession haven't noticed that tightrope act, boys.

We have.

And we'll be sure to remember that in 2012 and let the rest of union colleagues know as well.

One last thing I would like to say about this - I don't agree too often with deformer Mike Antonucci, but his post that this Wisconsin fight, coming during the same week that Duncan put together Collaborpalooza in which unions and districts supposedly got together at the behest of the Obama admin to find ways to collaborate on reform, is a "work of fate."

I agree.

It exposes this collaboration stuff as the jive it is.

As I noted in this post here, the Rhode Island union collaborated at every opportunity it was asked to do so - on RttT, on teacher evaluations, on school turnarounds - and got 2,000 fired teachers in Providence for its efforts.

EVERY teacher in Providence, Rhode Island got FIRED.

Collaboration did not save them.

Reformers friendly to the union while the collaboration was happening did not come out in support when they were all canned.

Duncan and Obama, cheerleaders of teacher firings in the state just last year, have been COMPLETELY silent on this horror.

That, my union friends and colleagues, is where "collaboration" gets you.

Better to take the streets, put up the barricades, and take a baseball bat to collaboration.

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