By Victor Skinner
NEW YORK – The union front group New Yorkers for Great Public Schools is making it easy for reform-minded voters in the Big Apple to identify the candidates they oppose.
The group is asking friendly politicians to sign a pledge not to accept funding or support from StudentsFirstNY, a pro-education reform group that advocates for charter school options and meaningful teacher evaluations – the hallmarks of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s education agenda, Capital New York reports.
New Yorkers for Great Public Schools believes that increased education spending, instead of school choice or better teachers, is the solution to the problems plaguing the city’s schools.
“ … (T)he overall goal of the pledge is to make (StudentsFirstNY) toxic, or at least to indicate candidates who accept its support are choosing a side in the fight between unions and pro-charter reformers,” the news site reports.
That means the 33 Democratic politicians who signed the pledge have self-identified themselves as union apologists who have no interest in the most promising plans to improve public education for NYC students. They are sending a direct message to voters that they would rather dump more tax dollars into the city’s failing public schools (and the pocketbooks of veteran teachers) than foster new and innovative education programs through public charter schools.
Those who sign the pledge are announcing their support for the United Federation of Teachers traditions of protecting pervert teachers who abuse students, demanding raises for educators based simply on seniority rather than performance, and opposing virtually any suggestion to significantly improve student performance.
For reference, a list of the union supporters can be found at CapitalNewYork.com.
In our opinion, New Yorkers for Great Public schools have done voters a great service.
They’ve identified for voters all of the weak-kneed politicians who will bend to the will of Big Labor and ignore the interests of parents and children who deserve better schools.
Hopefully, the group will pursue a similar effort statewide.