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American Federation of Teachers

Stopping "Make America Hate Again"

Randi Weingarten | Posted 07.24.2016 | Education
Randi Weingarten

This is a moment of reckoning for our country -- a battle for its soul and for our children's future. These two conventions last week highlighted very different visions for our country. Martin Luther King Jr. said, "The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice." That's true, but it doesn't bend on its own.

The Crucial Need to Expand the Non-White Teacher Pipeline

Marian Wright Edelman | Posted 06.10.2016 | Politics
Marian Wright Edelman

Students of color constitute a majority in our schools but teachers of color constitute only 18 percent of their faculties.

Honoring Our Past and Inspiring Our Future

Randi Weingarten | Posted 05.15.2016 | Education
Randi Weingarten

The American Federation of Teachers reached a significant milestone this week: the centennial of our founding. As I've pored over historical documents from our archives, it's clear that, from generation to generation, our union has been a vehicle to fight for positive change both in public schools and in society.

A Quarter-Life Crisis for Public Charter Schools?

Greg Richmond | Posted 05.02.2016 | Education
Greg Richmond

There's a war between charter school proponents and opponents. It's sucking up resources and slowing down progress for all children, and it should end. To stop warring and start cooperating, both sides must honestly acknowledge our flaws.

Diversity in Teaching: TFA Walks the Walk, AFT Talks the Talk

Erika Sanzi | Posted 03.23.2016 | Education
Erika Sanzi

It takes a lot of nerve for the head of a huge teaching organization known to have an overwhelmingly white membership to play the diversity card against another teaching organization that has 50 percent teachers of color, yet in the crazy world of education politics, it happened.

Wanting 'More' From the United Federation of Teachers: A Profile of Jia Lee

Yohuru Williams | Posted 03.09.2016 | Education
Yohuru Williams

In her bid to become UFT president, Lee says she represents a large, but mostly silent body of teachers who remain frustrated with the union for not challenging damaging education polices.

Pension Funds Threaten to Pull the Plug on Pearson (Mis)Education

Alan Singer | Posted 03.07.2016 | Education
Alan Singer

Pearson (Mis)Education, the British-based global "education" publishers reported a net profit increased in 2015, but that was because it sold off asse...

Detroit Public Schools: Beyond a State of Emergency

Mercedes Schneider | Posted 01.19.2016 | Education
Mercedes Schneider

Since 1999, the state has been "taking over" Detroit Public Schools. Since 2009, Detroit's schools have been subject to a stream of emergency managers who move in for just under 18 months, do not answer to voters, and can basically do what they want without consequence.

Martin Luther King, Teachers' Unions and Social Justice

Yohuru Williams | Posted 01.12.2016 | Education
Yohuru Williams

This Martin Luther King Holiday, we need to be mindful of what public school educators are telling us about the state of our schools and by extension, our children and our democracy. "Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly."

Education Policies Worthy of the Name 'Reform'

Randi Weingarten | Posted 12.20.2015 | Education
Randi Weingarten

This new law can create positive change. States will now take the lead on accountability, interventions and teacher evaluation systems. While some states will mess up, we hope most will learn from the failures of NCLB and give teachers and schools the latitude and support to deeply engage students and to focus on the whole child.

Lighten the Load on Our Nurses for Better Health Care

Rep. John Conyers | Posted 12.17.2015 | Politics
Rep. John Conyers

Prior to the OSH Act, workplace safety was a concept only familiar to those with a good union or an unusually goodhearted boss. There was no law saying your employer had to send you home every day in one piece. The OSH Act changed that.

This Supreme Court Case Could Significantly Weaken Teachers Unions

EdSource | Rebecca Klein | Posted 10.23.2015 | Politics

This piece comes to us courtesy of EdSource, where it was originally published. Sometime in early 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments i...

Bernie Sanders, Not Hillary Clinton, Deserves Union Endorsements

Ben Spielberg | Posted 10.06.2015 | Politics
Ben Spielberg

While Clinton is far more union-friendly than anyone running for the Republican nomination, her labor credentials are significantly worse than her main challenger in the Democratic primary, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders.

Around the World in 30 Days -- September 2015

C. M. Rubin | Posted 09.30.2015 | Education
C. M. Rubin

In the response from our global teacher bloggers to our September question, "What was your most challenging classroom and how did you turn it around?", a common theme ran through all anecdotes -- an openness to student experience that allows for a more understanding, empathetic response to student's problems.

The Global Search for Education: Teaching in a Global World

C. M. Rubin | Posted 09.19.2015 | Education
C. M. Rubin

Randi Weingarten is the President of the American Federation of Teachers (AFT). I talk to Randi about what we can learn from successful education models abroad, the increasing importance of teachers having robust global and cultural competence, and how the US can do a better job supporting its teachers.

Want More Diverse Educators? Then It Is Time To Improve Teacher Working Conditions

The Huffington Post | Rebecca Klein | Posted 09.16.2015 | Black Voices

Nearly 19 percent of teachers of color left their jobs after the 2011 - 2012 school year, either exiting the profession or pursuing a position at ano...

South Africa Teachers Union Denounces Pearson (Always Earning)

Alan Singer | Posted 09.03.2015 | Education
Alan Singer

Everyone does not agree with Fallon that Pearson's burning desire is "better education." In fact many around the world suspect the company's burning desire is to maximize profits with little regard for its impact on the world's poor.

Dear President Carter

Angela Garcia Combs | Posted 08.24.2015 | Politics
Angela Garcia Combs

When I had no safety at home, when food was scarce and my life seemed impossibly violent and out of control, you became President. You instilled a belief in me that moral leadership will win.

In Vergara's Wake, A New Role for Unions

Kim Farris-Berg | Posted 08.13.2015 | Education
Kim Farris-Berg

The national focus on teaching quality is gradually giving rise to the emergence of authentic opportunities for teacher leadership.

The Power of Collective Voice

Randi Weingarten | Posted 07.19.2016 | Education
Randi Weingarten

Through the union, educators are raising our collective voice. Together with parents and students, educators are turning the tide. Teaching is our heart. Our students are our soul. And the union is our spine. When educators raise their voice and their power, we can reclaim the promise of public education.

What's Wrong With The AFT?

Jacobin | Lois Weiner | Posted 07.15.2015 | Politics

This story was originally posted at Jacobin, a print quarterly that offers socialist perspectives on politics and economics. Support Jacobin and buy a...

Dave Jamieson

The Kill Shot For Public-Sector Unions

HuffingtonPost.com | Dave Jamieson | Posted 07.13.2015 | Politics

WASHINGTON -- Faced with its gravest threat in years from the Supreme Court, one of the country's largest labor unions is preparing for a ruling that ...

Dave Jamieson

Clinton Picks Up The First Major Labor Endorsement Of 2016

HuffingtonPost.com | Dave Jamieson | Posted 07.12.2015 | Politics

WASHINGTON -- Hillary Clinton picked up an early if not surprising endorsement on Saturday from one of the country's largest labor unions: the America...

Our Golden Opportunity

Lily Eskelsen Garcia | Posted 07.05.2016 | Education
Lily Eskelsen Garcia

With the reauthorization of the absurd and dysfunctional NCLB, we have a chance to once again let teachers teach and let students learn. We have a chance to ignite their imaginations, encourage them to reach their full potential, and expand their world view beyond filling in bubble tests with a #2 pencil.

School Is Out for the Political 'Silly Season'

Ronnie Musgrove | Posted 06.11.2016 | Politics
Ronnie Musgrove

Our highest priority in education should be to train and support great teachers. People become teachers because they want to make a difference in children's lives, and I'm living proof they can make all the difference in the world.