Sunday, January 27, 2019

Some Early Lessons From The Los Angeles Teachers Strike | PopularResistance.Org

Some Early Lessons From The Los Angeles Teachers Strike | PopularResistance.Org


Corporate media absolutely won’t tell you this, but this year’s Los Angeles teachers strike is the latest chapter in the long running struggle against the privatization of public education in the US. With massive public support, 30,000 teachers have voted a settlement that increases their wages a little, brings back nurses, librarians and counselors to each and every one of the city’s 900 schools, caps class sizes and charter school expansion and more. Striking teachers managed to bring issues to the table that were supposed to be impossible to address, like the manipulation of school board real estate, school closings and charter policies to gentrify neighborhoods, among others.
The facts, which again corporate media has no interest in telling you, are that United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA), following and improving on the model of the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) leading up to their 2012 strike, raised its membership dues a couple years in advance to hire a research team and a cadre of community organizers. These cadre were charged with forging deep and permanent links between teachers and communities across the city in motion for better housing, against mass incarceration, for equitable transit and most especially with organized parents in every corner of the city who aimed to improve the schools. Childrens’ learning conditions after all, are the teachers working conditions. As in Chicago, these deep organizational and personal links with the organized masses provided them with a degree of immunity from the tsunami of lies coming from corporate media before, during and after the strike. UTLA spent extra money, extra staff time and extra care as well cultivating and educating its own members to support the new policies, to ensure every teacher was contacted repeatedly in the year and longer before the strike, provided with the facts and offered opportunities and chances to weigh in and to take ownership of their union at every level.
For a generation now, privatizing the public schools has been the bipartisan project of America’s one percenters. Democrats and Republicans, Donald Trump and Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, celebrities like John Legend and Magic Johnson, conservative and liberal engines of corporate philanthropy including the Gates, Walton, Broad, Heritage, McArthur and other foundations, Fox News and CNN, black and white big city mayors, hucksters like Al Sharpton and Roland Martin, the lords of CONTINUE READING: Some Early Lessons From The Los Angeles Teachers Strike | PopularResistance.Org

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