Newswire – July 28, 2020

Education = National Security…Schools Delay Opening..Unions threaten security strike. 

You can’t get better credentials to speak about National Security than Rear Admiral McRaven and former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. As if to highlight their warnings,  teachers unions across the country have unveiled “demands” having little to do with actual education and much to do with politics

K-12 EDUCATION IS BIGGEST NATIONAL SECURITY RISK. Take it from one who knows — retired Rear Admiral and Navy Seal William McRaven, who was also Chancellor of the University of Texas System. He’s seen just about every kind of threat to U.S. national security (he oversaw the raid that killed Osama Bin Laden) and without hesitation he believes America’s  #1 national security issue is the failings of our current K-12 education system. Much wisdom in this very sobering piece, which sadly indicates little if any progress from 2014 when former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said exactly the same thing.

UNION DEMANDS PUT VESTED INTERESTS OVER KIDS. A prime example is the Massachusetts Teachers Association’s ongoing assault on logic, common sense, not to mention the kids they’re supposed to care about. As you can read in Jeanne Allen’s exposé, their demands seem right out of Alice In Wonderland.

UNIONS DEMAND MORE MONEY, LESS WORK, LITTLE EDUCATING. While our nation’s teachers would love nothing more than to get back to educating, learning what they need to learn to be innovative and keep the students they love moving forward, the unions that they’ve been required to pay (up until Janus of course) have been working hard to extract new demands from the government as a condition of going back to work. We could fill pages with the absurdities, but here’s a few sadly representative examples.  Read ‘em and weep:

  • Massachusetts.  Delay school start by 2 weeks so teachers have time “to collaborate and plan together.” And of course gut charters, abolish the police, etc. ad nauseam. Take a deeper dive into this with Jeanne’s article above.

  • Los Angeles. No in-person teaching or schooling “until a vaccine is available” — which could be never — shut down charters, increase taxes, more homeless shelters…a laundry list of items that don’t once mention effective teaching.

  • Tennessee. Protesting Governor Lee’s plan to follow CDC guidelines while returning to in-person schooling various local unions are calling for — surprise — more money and for schools to remain closed until counties have not had a confirmed COVID case for 14 days. Setting a terrific example for any students watching, they also accused the Governor of wanting teachers to die.

  • D.C. Apparently out of logic and persuasion to support their anti-in person schooling stance, D.C. teachers lined up dozens of body bags outside the schools’ offices to protest plans that could send them — gasp — back to classrooms in the fall. We agree with two comments in the story, “time to fire these clowns and hire people who want jobs,” and “give the money back to parents”.  Mother – and father — know best.

  • Minneapolis – St. Paul. Not to be outdone by their comrades in D.C., the Twin Cities teachers unions organized a march to express outrage at the prospect of having to earn their salaries by teaching in a classroom. They obviously think the CDC is staffed by ghouls —  their logic-free slogans included “I can’t teach from a grave” and “Exactly how many dead kids is acceptable”.  Exactly how much ignorance of the best current science is acceptable?

  • Michigan. The AFT is encouraging its members to ignore any back-to-school orders they don’t like. They are providing members with ways to remain on the payroll without going back to school.  These include invoking the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Family Medical Leave Act, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, and through their own union contracts. And these folks pretend to be role models for our kids?

Last but not least, today the American Federation of Teachers threatened in school reopening negotiations on Capitol Hill that they will run “safety strikes” if all of the above and more are not met.  Here’s the question, are YOU going to take this sitting down?

IT SHOULDN’T TAKE A PANDEMIC to bring the obvious into focus, but “a system whose structure makes it impervious to failure in everything, from reading to college or career readiness, is a system that is incapable of innovating.”  It’s time for action. Read what we can do to solve the new irresponsibility movement.

TWEETS AREN’T JUST FOR THE BIRDS. Join us on Twitter where the debates, personal attacks and lies are flying from those who want to put adults ahead of children.

ONE LITTLE PIECE OF GOOD NEWS. A virtual charter school in Carmichael, California is seeing enrollment soar as  the coronavirus pandemic changes education. The number of students enrolling in the non-classroom based charter school has maxed out. Visions in Education has been around for two decades, but its educational model has grown in popularity since COVID struck. School leaders aim to deliver “flexibility without the drama,” and  hope to be “an incubator of innovation.” Bring it on.

As August waits on the doorstep, we hope you and yours are able to achieve some meaningful, traditional “down time” in this most untraditional of summers.  We’re doing our best — but as always are ready and anxious to answer any questions you might have or offer assistance in any way needed. In the meantime, relax and enjoy the inimitable Nat King Cole singing one of the iconic summer songs.


Founded in 1993, the Center for Education Reform aims to expand educational opportunities that lead to improved economic outcomes for all Americans — particularly our youth — ensuring that conditions are ripe for innovation, freedom and flexibility throughout U.S. education. We’re always delighted to hear from our readers…suggestions, questions and even the occasional complaint!