Teachers' unions are upping their demands before they'll agree to teach

Teachers' unions, which invariably hew hard left, have seen the Wuhan virus as an opportunity.  They've insisted that, before their members return to school, communities need to make some promises, such as shutting down the competition (i.e., charter schools); giving illegal aliens full medical benefits; testing everyone in the entire community around the school for free; and so on.

Now, though, they're going one better: the unions are insisting that teachers shouldn't be required to teach either in the classroom or, if at all possible, online although they should still get paid. I am exaggerating only slightly.

First, let me state my bias: my dad, a Democrat, was a public school teacher from the 1960s through the 1980s.  He routinely came home from union meetings apoplectically angry because the union wanted to dumb down the curriculum.  (Teaching in Ebonics was already bruited about then.)

I was an urban public school student in the 1960s and 1970s, which meant I saw incompetent teachers get lifetime sinecures thanks to the unions.  I was also the parent of public school students for most of the last two decades...and nothing had changed.

I am not a fan of the teachers' unions, nor am I a fan of the fact that the unions encourage teachers to view themselves as perpetual victims.  I know with certainty that there are wonderful, dedicated, inspired, hard-working, creative, intelligent teachers out there.  My dad was one, and I've met so many others.  If you are one of those teachers, I salute you.

However, the great teachers are too often offset by teachers (women I've known going back to kindergarten) who flood my Facebook feed with their union-created posts.  These posts make teaching elementary school sound worse than slaving in a Siberian gulag, being on a road crew in Texas in the summer, or working a 40-hour week stocking shelves at Lowes.

So you're all clear now: I am biased.

My bias means that I've had little patience with those teachers who insist that they cannot possibly go back to classrooms this fall.  It's one thing for store clerks, truckers, food-preparers, police officers, childcare-providers for 100,000 students in the empty New York City public schools, and the millions of other people who showed up over the last four months to go to work, but teachers?  Never!

A perfect example of this attitude comes from Rebecca Martinson, who wrote an opinion piece at the New York Times with the title "I Won't Return to the Classroom, and You Shouldn't Ask Me To."  She assured parents that remote learning is just as good.  She promised them that she has always been the good martyr who will buy supplies or stop a bullet (something incredibly rare despite the media hype when such tragedies happen).  But be as brave as a Walmart clerk?  No way!  The comments show that lots of other teachers agree with her.

It doesn't matter that everywhere in the world, schoolrooms are reopening.  Nor do America's unionized teachers care that there are no cases of teachers catching the Wuhan virus from their students.  It's far easier and more satisfying to engage in leftist political extortion, as both the Los Angeles and Durham, North Carolina, teachers' unions did.

And now, according to the Times, teachers don't even want to do online teaching (emphasis mine):

On Tuesday, the nation's second-largest teachers' union raised the stakes dramatically by authorizing its local and state chapters to strike if their districts do not take sufficient precautions — such as requiring masks and updating ventilation systems — before reopening classrooms. Already, teachers' unions have sued Florida's governor over that state's efforts to require schools to offer in-person instruction.


With the academic year set to begin next month in much of the country, parents are desperate for teachers to provide more interactive, face-to-face instruction this fall, both online and, where safe, in person. But many unions, while concerned about the safety of classrooms, are also fighting to limit the amount of time that teachers are required to be on video over the course of a day.

Parents desperately want life to return to normal, and they're worried about their kids losing time.  Teachers' unions, therefore, think they're in the catbird seat and can set the terms.

They may be wrong.  Parents unimpressed by "distance learning" are creating homeschooling pods.  (Leftists are already attacking the pods as examples of white privilege.)  Others are discovering private tutors or homeschooling.

In the Montessori community, there's a popular saying: "Montessori teaches to the student; public school teaches to the curriculum."  Pods, tutors, and online resources also teach to the student.

Public school teachers may, therefore, discover the truth behind the expression "Be careful what you wish for because you might get it."  They'll be relieved of the classroom and online work, but they'll also be relieved of their incomes.

Image: Pixabay.

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