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‘Freeloader’ claims disparage public employees unions fought to represent

Just as educators encourage their students to be independent thinkers and hold true to themselves, so too should educators be trusted by their colleagues to make decisions regarding union membership that are best for them and their families. Unfortunately, not all of those in the education field exhibit this respect and instead succumb to name-calling. ...

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St. Paul Teachers Put Benefits Ahead of Students

The number one talking point for teachers unions inevitably involves a variation on the theme of the lack of  funding for K-12 education and dire need to funnel millions more taxpayer dollars into the classroom. But the decision by St. Paul teachers to change health insurance plans in the middle of a contract despite the expected impact on their students and district classrooms exposes the reality behind their rhetoric. Switching to the state's health insurance plan will benefit teachers personally, but trigger a $4 million penalty and hole in the school district's budget, according to the Star Tribune. Superintendent Joe Gothard and Board...

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Are Minnesota’s Schools the “Worst In the Nation”?

The Star Tribune reports on billboards that have gone up around the Twin Cities: The bold statement is clarified in smaller print at the bottom of the signs, citing national statistics on high school graduation rates without specifics. (The most recent data available, from the 2016-17 school year, show Minnesota had the lowest graduation rates of any state for black and Hispanic students, and the second-lowest for American Indian students.) The Ciresi Walburn Foundation, which focuses on education in Minnesota, is behind the campaign: The foundation hands out more than $1 million each year in grants, all from the tobacco settlement and investment proceeds....

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National Teachers’ Union Adopts New Social Agenda, Votes Down Proposal to Prioritize Student Learning

The national teachers’ union—the National Education Association—held its annual convention in Houston the beginning of July. This year, NEA delegates voted and approved new business items such as teaching the concept of “White Fragility” in trainings and staff development, and endorsing “the fundamental right to abortion under Roe v. Wade.” A resolution to make student learning a priority was defeated. ...

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