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Teachers Unions and Shifting Winds

Commented Oct 26, 2010 at 07:38:07 in Education

“To the Ad Hominem Responders,

I can't decide if your posts are for real, or whether Bowdon created you to prove his point -- that unions keep repeating their talking points,

For example, those of you who say he's "trashing" or "hating" teachers -- yet we can all read that his mother was a teacher -- we can also read that he wants merit pay for "the most talented, hardest-working teachers" and their "exceptional efforts." He simply wants to distinguish teachers -- reward the good ones and fire the bad ones.

If you were for real, you'd have the courage to answer the original post directly. Why does Joel Klein say it's virtually impossible to fire a teacher because of all the red tape the unions have created? Why don't teachers unions ever criticize excessive levels of administration spending that take money out of classrooms, (which many rank & file teachers acknowledge all the time)? And if reform were truly so unnecessary, why are the unions now planning a reform conference themselves?

Look, it's a free country. If you'd just rather stick to your age-old talking points, claim reformers hate all teachers, and resort to ad hominem attacks, go right ahead. You have that right. I'm just saying wake up and look around: that approach isn't working anymore. Barack Obama, Bill Gates & the Director of An Inconvenient Truth with Al Gore, and Mike Bloomberg all support charter schools. Let me guess -- they all hate teachers too? :”

freducate on Oct 26, 2010 at 14:36:35

“"I can't decide if your posts are for real, or whether Bowdon created you to prove his point -- that unions keep repeating their talking points"

I've seen so much hymnal singing here and elsewhere that there's no need to invent sock puppets. It's an a-choired taste, but it is legion and reeks of defeat. I feel bad for the many teachers who don't subscribe to it, and I feel worse for the kids toiling in its wake and their families who are not getting what they need.

"If you were for real, you'd have the courage to answer the original post directly."

Don't hold your breath on this one. That page was torn from the hymnal. Middle-finger pointing, dismissing all concerns as "teacher bashing," declaring a Reform War, and that cognitive dissonance spoken of in the article are the big hits in rotation at present.

"Look, it's a free country. If you'd just rather stick to your age-old talking points, claim reformers hate all teachers, and resort to ad hominem attacks, go right ahead. You have that right. I'm just saying wake up and look around: that approach isn't working anymore."

It sure isn't. And it never has. That's a big part of the problem right there. But instead of examining how they greased the chute for so much of what they are against, for many it will just lead to a rabid rinse and repeat of the whole cycle. Maddening.”

hawkseye on Oct 26, 2010 at 14:18:45

“I don't know if they hate teachers or not, but I do know that they don't know much about education.”