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ANALYSIS: What's behind the tough talk from the American Federation of Teachers and Randi Weingarten?

THE AMERICAN Federation of Teachers (AFT) leadership is straining to balance growing unrest among union members and their strategy of making concessions in the name of "partnership." That effort was on display at the union's . . .

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Above, Michael Mulgrew (President of the United Federation of Teachers, New York City), Karen Lewis (President of the Chicago Teachers Union) and Alex Caputo Pearl (President of the United Teachers of Los Angeles) were on the panel on

New York votes dominate Common Core debate at the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) convention as a majority of AFT delegates votes to continue critical support for Common Core ... AFT leadership has to deploy union officials to speak, while classroom teachers oppose Common Core

A mad dash for the microphones started when a United Federation of Teachers (UFT, New York City, Local 2 of the AFT), delegate began sprinting as the doors were opened for delegates to enter the . . .

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All of those who spoke against Common Core at the AFT convention were classroom teachers, like Pia Payne-Shannon from Minneapolis (above speaking during the debate). Most of those who spoke from the floor in support of the

Are the national teachers unions really ready to make a comeback against the neoliberal attacks on public education and unions?

[Editor's Note. The article below comes out as "Can the teachers' unions come back?" on July 10, 2014 at Socialist Worker -- http://socialistworker.org/2014/07/10/can-teachers-unions-rebound -- as Chicago's delegates head to Los Angeles for the convention of . . .

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Beginning at ten a.m. on the first day of the Chicago Teachers Strike of 2012, mass marches either went through Chicago's downtown (the

Bayou children have 'boating' instead of busing to get to school... Louisiana activists show fight is the same all over

Rosina Phillippe, an activist in Grand Bayou, Louisiana, may at first glance seem to have little in common with Chicago parents and teachers in their fight against closing schools. Phillippe is a Native American living . . .

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'The one thing Boeing can't take away is our solidarity'... Bold Boeing Workers Refuse to Screw Over Next Generation

[Editor's Note. Those in Chicago who only read the Sun-Times and Tribune, or who get their version of the "news" from TV, have been fed nothing but propaganda against the Boeing workers in Seattle, who . . .

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Contrary to some of the versions of union current events at large in 2013, many industries are still largely unionized -- and as a result facing the same kinds of attacks teachers and other unionized public workers face. The airline and aircraft industries have been union for more than 60 years, from those who build the planes (above) to those who fly them, maintain them on the ground, or care for the needs of flyers in flight. The same corporate executives who narrow seats and aisles on commercial airlines in the USA (and charge for every piece of baggage) are trying to bust the airline unions, with Boeing among the leaders. Boeing, a corporate favorite of Rahm Emanuel, is also part of the Civic Committee of the Chicago Commercial Club.

MEDIA WATCH: Is the CTU leadership fighting goofy evaluation systems just because 'it gets them elected'? Bloomberg Business Week proclaims 'New Haven Model' (and Chicago's un-model) in major article headlined 'This Is How You Fix Public Schools'

Is the Chicago Teachers Union run by a bunch of "rabble rousers"? Anyone reading the Chicago Tribune or some of the pundits of the plutocracy elsewhere in Chicago's media would hear that phrase often applied . . .

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The man second from left in the above photograph, depicted as bowing before the mayor and school board chief of New Haven Connecticut, is David Cicarella, President of the New Haven Federation of Teachers, a local of the American Federation of Teachers. The above photograph, which had to have been approved by Cicarella, illustrated the May 9, 2013 article entitled

Michael Mulgrew re-elected as UFT President... Opposition MORE caucus evaluating election outcome

The "Unity" caucus in New York City's United Federation of Teachers (UFT) won the recent union election, returning incumbent Michael Mulgrew to a full term at president of the largest K-12 local in the American . . .

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UFT President Michael Mulgrew was re-elected in the New York City union's general election in April 2013.

CORE in Philadelphia as Chicago and Philadelphia teachers increase solidarity

[Editor's Note: A video of a recent visit by Chicago Teachers Union activists from CORE has been put into a video and comment from teachers and others in Philadelphia. The material was published in . . .

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MEDIA WATCH: Ruling class 'merit pay' propaganda continues in major media... Newark gets international and national praise for knuckling under to merit pay, while Los Angeles agrees to 'performance' in evaluations

Anyone who believed that one good Chicago strike would stop the ruling class agenda against the public schools would have been surprised at how completely the agenda is still being pushed. Within a couple of . . .

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New Jersey's reactionary governor Chris Christie praises the Newark merit pay agreement, without too much notice of the fact that the money to pay for it has come from a Facebook grant, another example of corporate manipulation of the public agenda. AFT President Randi Weingarten also praised the agreement, standing by while the corporate media used the opportunity to bash the Chicago Teachers Union and CTU President Karen Lewis.

Chicago's teachers have created a true 'paradigm shift'... National Education Association weights in with 'lessons' of the Chicago Teachers Strike of 2012

During one of our discussions in Chicago about what we were doing, I told friends and comrades that we were really helping create a true "paradigm shift." One of the saddest things of the past . . .

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STRIKEWATCH ANALYSIS: What Chicago's teachers won

[Editor's Note: The following article originally appeared in Socialist Worker, September 26, 2012. http://socialistworker.org/2012/09/26/what-the-ctu-accomplished. This analysis is reprinted here with permission of both Socialist Worker and the reporter, who is a CPS parent. Published by . . .

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Strikers and supporters, including many students, begin to line up for the march through Chicago's West Side outside Marshall High School (background building) on September 13, 2012, the fourth day of the Chicago Teachers Strike of 2012. Substance photo by Kati Gilson.

Scab officials ruining NFL season

[Editor's Note: The following was sent around on September 25, 2012 by Richard Trumka, President of the AFL-CIO. While we are reprinting it here and hoping that our readers will comment on scabs in professional . . .

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National union leaders still 'on the bus' (NEA, literally) with Arne Duncan despite Chicago... Randi, Randi every tweet... How often did the real Randi Weingarten every stand up on Twitter during the Chicago strike?

Seeing that America Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten got her picture taken on the picket line outside Fulton Elementary School early on in the Chicago Teacher Strike, I started watching her on Twitter. I . . .

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The front of the September 12, 2012 march of Chicago teachers and supporters during the Chicago Teachers Strike of 2012. Substance photo by Graham Hill.

CTU delegates vote to end srike

After receiving lengthy reports from each of the union's four officers and from the union's attorney, the members of the Chicago Teachers Union House of Delegates voted by a large majority to suspend the seven-day-old . . .

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More than 20 TV trucks and more than 50 reporters waited impatiently outside the House of Delegates meeting until the vote was taken. Once the delegates began leaving, they were swarmed by reporters trying to get first responses after it was announced that the strike had been suspended. Substance photo by George N. Schmidt.

LABOR DAY SINGALONG: Solidarity Forever... The words of the song for those who need to learn all of them in 2012

[Below are the four ‘main’ verses of the union song “Solidarity Forever”. Two other verses from the “original” have been deleted. These are the ones usually sung. The original was first published in the IWW . . .

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Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis speaking to the crowd of more than 3,000 at Chicago's Auditorium Theatre on May 23, 2012. Substance photo by Graham Hill.

STRIKEWATCH: THE SCAB. 'Race To The Top' has always been around... In a 1903 speech, Jack London analyzed The Scab

More than 100 years ago, Jack London, then a socialist as well as a novelist, wrote the following about the scab, and how it fit into the context of class war. Read the following and . . .

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Two of the biggest scab herders in the USA in the 21st Century are U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan (left) and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel (right), seen above during a media event at Chicago's Schurz High School on September 9, 2011. Duncan was supposedly promoting public education under the slogan

Wisconsin union supported Paul Ryan, Scott Walker and threatened union members who complained about it

As students of working class and union history know, one of the ironies of the past 35 years of labor history has been that from time to time unions and union leaders who should know . . .

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For more than a decade, since Arne Duncan became

MEDIA WATCH: Education Week — 'American Education's Newspaper of Record' —makes sure the party line still rings out on coverage of AFT convention

Anyone who has been subscribing, as I have, to Education Week since its inception a quarter century (or so) ago appreciates the fact that its primary value is not as a source of actual news . . .

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Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis was prominent on the floor of the AFT convention in Detroit. Above, Lewis spoke in favor of the AFT Solidarity Resolution, which had been introduced as a Special Order of Business, just before Joe Biden's speech. Biden's media handlers threatened to confiscate Substance's camera when this photograph was taken, as part of the silly attempts to manipulate press coverage of the convention by the representatives of the Obama-Biden campaign office out of Chicago. Substance photo by George N. Schmidt.

Erasing a petition with 700,000 signatures with one Republican legal memo... Michigan Attorney General calls collective bargaining amendment to state constitution 'too complicated' and rules it off the ballot

Barely a week after Randi Weingarten, President of the 1.5 million member American Federation of Teachers, led a march in support of the Detroit Federation of Teachers and Detroit unions during the AFT convention (which . . .

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Detroit 'Emergency Manager' ignores negotiation plea, may finish off Detroit Federation of Teachers

The Emergency Financial Manager of the Detroit Public Schools, Roy Roberts, replied to the American Federation of Teachers’ President, Randi Weingarten, and the Detroit Federation of Teachers’ President, Keith Johnson’s request to restore DFT’s collective . . .

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Despite the fact that she was speaking on behalf of the 1.5 million members of the AFT, Randi Weingarten (above, chairing a session of the convention) was snubbed by Detroit manager Roy Roberts. Substance photo by Kati Gilson.