Saturday, I found myself explaining for the umpteenth time why I, as a good teacher, would support teachers’ unions, let alone be a chapter leader. I was jotting down some notes for a blog entry, but then thought this might be worth getting bigger.
I got in touch with Ken Bernstein and Jose Vilson, both of whom I met at the recent EWA Seminar I attended, and Jonathan Halabi, who I know through my local UFT, to discuss the idea, and we decided to move forward with it. We reached out to educators we knew and respected as excellent teachers, and the idea of #EDUSolidarity was born. Our formal letter of invitation follows.
I hope you’ll join us in writing on March 22. If you don’t have a blog of your own, I am happy to publish guest posts on mine.
As we all know, teachers and our unions, along with those of other public sector employees, face unprecedented attacks in the national media and from local and state governments. It is easy for politicians and the media to demonize the “unions” and their public faces; it is far more difficult to demonize the millions of excellent teachers who are proud union members. Those of us who are excellent teachers and who stand in solidarity with our unions are probably no stranger to the question “Well, why are you involved with the union if you’re a good teacher?” It’s time for us to stand up and answer that question loudly and clearly.
On Tuesday, March 22, teachers in NYC will wear red in solidarity with our brothers and sisters who are under attack in Wisconsin, Ohio, Indiana, Tennessee and elsewhere. We also stand with teachers in places like Idaho, California, and Texas who are facing massive layoffs. We would like to take this stand on the web as well. We encourage you to publish a piece on March 22 entitled “Why Teachers Like Me Support Unions.” In this piece, please explain your own reasons for being a proud union member and/or supporter. Including personal stories can make this a very powerful piece. It would be great to also explain how being a union member supports and enables you to be the kind of teacher that you are. We want these posts to focus not only on our rights, but also on what it takes to be a great teacher for students, and how unions support that.
After you have published your post, please share it through the form that will go live on March 22 at http://www.edusolidarity.us. Posts should also be shared on Twitter using the tag #edusolidarity.
Ken Bernstein – Social Studies, MD – teacherken
Anthony Cody – Science Instructional Coach, CA – Living in Dialogue
Ed Darrell – Social Studies, TX – MillardFillmore’s Bathtub
Nancy Flanagan – Educational Consultant, MI – Teacher in a Strange Land
Jonathan Halabi – Math, NY – JD2718
Jamie Josephson – Social Studies, DC – Dontworryteach
Stephen Lazar – Social Studies/English, NY – Outside the Cave
Deborah Meier – Professor of Education, NY – Deborah Meier’s Blog
Doug Noon – Elementary, AK – Borderland
Kate Nowak – Math, NY – f(t)
Sabrina Stevens Shupe – Educational Activist, CO – Failing Schools
Jose Vilson – Math, NY – The Jose Vilson
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