Why do I support teacher unions?
Because the quality of education is better. Yes it is. (note: I worked in a private boarding school for two years before moving to public schools). We want our students taught by teachers who focus on the students learning.
Without unions, teachers also have to worry about the following non-education worries:
- Does this administrator like me? I’d like to think that all the administrators that I’ve worked for, 7 different people in my building over the past 5 years (not even counting higher ups), liked me and the job that I was doing. But teacher unions force the evaluation process to remain professional. Because humans are humans, and if any one person can derail you, then eventually, they will.
- Am I being paid in a fair manner? Unions allow for teachers not to have to worry about fairness in compensation. I don’t need to worry about the teacher next to me getting a raise because the administrator’s kid is in their class (I’ve seen it happen in the private system). Say what you want about every teacher at every level at every subject matter making the same despite different qualifications (I would, but not today), the system is still better then the alternative.
- Am I going to be fired because of a crazy parent? Yes they exist, and yes I’ve seen this happen in the private system. I’m not worried about a single biased observer affecting my livelihood.
I really could keep going, but instead, I’ll link to the excellent list of posts by other teachers on the same matter. http://edusolidarity.us/ Go there. Read. Straight from the horses (ouch) mouths. Follow #EDUSolidarity on Twitter.