Take, for example, this relatively innocent article from the St. Cloud Times about proposals to suspend or do away with state laws that require schools to start AFTER Labor Day. There is no indication in the article that Education Minnesota opposes the measures to change start dates and I can tell you that they DO NOT. Does that matter? Apparently not given that the comments are devoted to blaming unions for this provision:
This is such bull! This is about faculty, staff and administrators wanting to get to their cabins early!! Don't these people have ENOUGH time off!!! So, we should cut our summer short and the kids (in some schools) suffer without air conditioning so they can "get out early" in Spring.
GOOD!!!! 1. The teachers would have to work a full year for their pay! (However, no raises should be given)
2. We need year round school, maybe our stupid kids could catch up to the rest of the world. Too many are falling behind. One of the main problems is that parents are basically on dates with their kids, they don't parent, they don't discipline or set high enough expectations for their kids.
YEAH, year-round school.
i blame the school system for caving to the union so they get a 3 month vacation on top of all their breaks.
Another example comes from an editorial in the St. Cloud Times bashing Education Minnesota for commercials that ask the state to spare education funding as they look to make deep cuts in government spending.
Are they asking for more money for their union members or for the school districts in general? Every time we turn around, our public school systems are begging for more of our money. When is enough ever enough?
Yes, education is important. But where is the accountability for how that money is spent? For example, do the unions base teacher salaries on performance or merely on how long a teacher has been working?
Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, a union with more than a million members, said in a statement that "teachers want to make a difference in kids' lives, and they appreciate a president who shares that goal and will spend his political capital to provide the resources to make it happen."
"As with any public policy, the devil is in the details," Weingarten said. "And it is important that teachers' voices are heard as we implement the president's vision."
There are many times when the union must look inside itself and make sure it is being reasonable but the same must be asked of those people who automatically attack the union. It is difficult to take a measured position when those opposing you stake out such a virulent and mean spirited stance against you.