Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Teachers may stage ‘safety strikes’ if forced into unsafe schools — union leader says

In this March 11, 2019, photo, educators attending a rally to support funding for public schools in Texas fill the rotunda of the state Capitol in Austin. (Eric Gay/AP)

By Valerie Strauss

Teachers could go on strike “as a last resort” if they are forced to return to unsafe schools during the covid-19 pandemic, American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten warned Tuesday.

The executive council of the 1.7 million-member American Federation of Teachers approved a resolution Friday but not released until Tuesday giving AFT affiliates across the country authorization to stage strikes — even as President Trump and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos are pushing schools to fully reopen while school district leaders say they need massive federal funding to do so safely.

Weingarten gave a blistering speech at the organization’s annual convention, being held virtually this year, saying Trump’s response to the covid-19 pandemic “has been chaotic and catastrophic” and DeVos has “zero credibility."  Read more >>