AFT: Teachers, Unions Must Rise Up To Resist The Billionaire Assault On Public Education & Democracy
By Doug Cunningham
[Randi Weingarten]: “Nothin’ is more inspiring than when people whom the powerful want to keep down rise up. And we, too, will rise!
To rise takes more than a moment or even a hundred moments. It takes a movement. And you, my brothers and sisters, are part of that movement!”
In a fierce and passionate defense of public education and it’s central role in American Democracy AFT President Randi Weingarten Thursday blasted efforts to replace public education with private charter schools.
Speaking at the American Federation of Teachers Washington DC TEACH Conference, Weingarten says the evidence is in, and the charter schools experiment has failed.
[Randi Weingarten]: “The moment we’re in is the result of an intentional decades long campaign to protect the economic and the political power of the few against the rights of the many.
Vouchers, tuition tax credits and private for-profit charter school schemes do not work. After decades of experiments with voucher programs the research is clear. They fail most of the children they purportedly are intended to benefit.”
An AFT poll shows three-quarters of people responding oppose public education budget cuts and bleeding public schools to pay for private education vouchers.
Weingarten says the so-called school “choice’ championed by Trump Education Secretary Betsy DeVos is not only a failure but has racist, segregationist roots.
She cast teachers and unions as the David against the billionaire corporate Goliaths who want to use your tax dollars to destroy not only public education but other pillars of our democracy.
Weingarten equated destruction of the common public interest to tyranny.
Resistance to tyranny and injustice, she says, is vital to democracy. And teachers and labor unions can help empower that resistance in defense of democracy.
“If you know that your union can help empower you to make our communities and our world a better place rise up! Because by resisting injustice and reclaiming the promise of public education for all of our students we will preserve our democracy. We will protect our most vulnerable. We will strengthen our communities. We will take on Goliath! And we WILL win!”