Teachers’ union poll shows GOP leads on education

Likely voters in battleground states have more confidence in Republicans on education than Democrats, according to a poll commissioned by the American Federation of Teachers (AFT).

Thirty-nine percent of respondents said they have “more confidence” in Republicans to deal with education issues compared to 38 percent in Democrats.

Education becoming “too politicized” was identified as the biggest problem with public schools, and respondents were more dissatisfied (50 percent) than satisfied (38 percent) with “the amount of say that parents have in what their children are taught.” Respondents also selected parent organizations over teachers’ unions for who they have more confidence in regarding the “right ideas for public schools.”

Another poll commissioned by Democrats for Education Reform asked likely voters in battleground congressional districts who they “trust more to handle issues related to schools and education.” Again, Republicans edged out Democrats, 47 percent to 44 percent, and led by 9 points among parents and 10 points among minority voters.

“American voters have long trusted Democrats more than Republicans on the issue of education,” opines Corey DeAngelis in the Wall Street Journal. “That’s changing. … These results represent a seismic shift in support.”

The national teachers’ unions blame Republicans and parents for the “politicization” of the classroom, but respondents of the union-commissioned poll were more likely “to say Democrats are ‘more responsible for politicizing education (and making education too much a part of the culture war)’ than Republicans” (33 percent to 28 percent), points out DeAngelis.

In fact, Midwest teachers themselves aren’t even citing parents as the reason behind their resignations, but rather student behavior and “progressive political activity.”