By Victor Skinner
STRONGSVILLE, Ohio – A poll of Strongsville, Ohio residents shows the vast majority are decidedly against an ongoing teachers strike, and most – even union households – don’t have a very favorable opinion of the local teachers union.
A survey of 2,196 Strongsville residents shows 74 percent oppose the teachers union strike, and nearly as many – 71 percent – don’t like the Strongsville Education Association, the union leading the protest, according to the Strongsville Patch.
Seventy-two percent of those who responded to the poll, taken last week, said their opinion of the teachers union has gotten worse in the last six months.
It’s easy to understand why. Since the teachers strike started March 4, SEA members have behaved like buffoons – heckling replacement teachers, blocking school driveways and protesting outside of school board members’ homes, according to media reports.
This past Friday, the president of the Cleveland teachers union visited Strongsville to support SEA members on the picket lines, and his comments exemplify the attitude we believe is driving the survey results.
“As far as I’m concerned, the Strongsville community and the board of education should be kissing the feet of these teachers,” the union boss said.
The community obviously disagrees, and the poll results show support for the union is especially low with parents of students in the school district.
“Among parents … 79 percent said they opposed the strike, while only 17 percent support it,” the Strongsville Patch reports.
“Even union households oppose the strike, the survey showed. Among households where a member belonged to a union, 63 percent oppose the strike, while 30 percent support it,” according to the news site.
The local school board, on the other hand, enjoys much more community support. Fifty-six percent of those surveyed had a favorable opinion of the school board, and 36 percent said their opinion of the board has gotten better over the last six months.
The Patch posted a link to the raw poll results.
One Patch reader, presumably a Strongsville resident, summarized the position of many who commented on the news site about the strike:
“One thing I am just baffled by is how the teachers can possibly think they are actually helping their case by yelling and carrying on like a petulant child,” Brian B. wrote.
“Ever hear the expression, ‘You catch more flies with honey than vinegar?’ Most people I talk to are not just against the union or the strike anymore, they’re beginning to wonder if their children will be safe with these people in the future.”