This is the new state of affairs, with "We the People" now fully informed--and able to challenge the power of a union like the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) directly--and on national TV.
Listen to Weingarten's answer. She thinks that the best way to improve teacher performance is--as she states: we "let the Union police our own profession." This makes about as much sense as putting inmates in charge of parole hearings. Unfortunately, the fruits of our public schools reflect this mentality.
Former Chancellor of the New York City Schools, Joel Klein, wrote a remarkable Op-ed in the Wall Street Journal back in December--long before the drama began to unfold in Wisconsin.
Here is what he said about the innovation he worked hard to push through during his 8 years there, and the chief obstacles to those innovations was the teachers union itself:
"Changing the system wasn't easy. The people with the loudest and best-funded voices are committed to maintaining a status quo that protects their needs even if it doesn't work for children. They want to keep their jobs by preserving a guaranteed customer base (a fixed number of students), regardless of performance. We have to rid the system of this self-serving approach. We must stop protecting ineffective teachers and stop basing layoffs on a last-in/first-out rule."
The teachers' unions are on the ropes. So is the whole idea of tenure. Let's keep pushing until "We the People" are in control of how we spend our money educating our children; letting the unions decide for us the past 30 years hasn't been working.
VIDEO 2: Teachers Union Boss Blames Black Drop Out Rate On Poverty
About 25 minutes after the above video, the C-SPAN host asked Randi Weingarten a simple question about the
Let's compare Weingarten's answer to Geoffrey Canada's. Canada is the man who was featured in "Waiting for Superman" and who runs the remarkably successful Harlem Children's Zone.
And here is what the former Chancellor of NYC's Schools had to say in a Wall Street Journal column in December about this knee jerk excuse of blaming poverty, rather than the schools and teachers, for the African American drop out rate:
"....it is wrong to assert that students' poverty and family circumstances severely limit their educational potential. It's now proven that a child who does poorly with one teacher could have done very well with another. Take Harlem Success Academy, a charter school with all minority, mostly high-poverty students admitted by lottery. It performs as well as our gifted and talented schools that admit kids based solely on demanding tests. We also have many new small high schools that replaced large failing ones, and are now getting outsized results for poor children."
Poor kids are trapped in bad schools, with bad teachers. That must change. And the unions have no interest in doing so!
Big HT to Lee Habeeb!