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The Mulgrew/Unity leadership is batting .000 this year. It has failed to protect us against school closings and a new teacher evaluation process that will tie our job security to our students’ standardized test scores.
Mayor Bloomberg just got another 24 schools closed and he has already said he plans to close more schools next year. Yet the Mulgrew/Unity team is pursuing the same strategy which failed to stop school closings in 2011. In both 2011 and 2012 the UFT leadership organized only a few, poorly organized and barely publicized rallies. And like last year the mobilizations come to an end once the PEP has voted to close the schools. Then the leadership files lawsuits which mobilize no members and generate no rank and file activism. In 2011 the lawsuits failed. If they fail again in 2012 several thousand UFT members will become ATRs. Even if the lawsuits succeed, they will merely delay the closings and leave our members in schools with shrinking enrollment, worried for their futures, and no better organized to fight back than they were a year ago.
Here too the Mulgrew/Unity leadership has failed. President Mulgrew has accepted an evaluation process that links teacher ratings to standardized test scores. While many details of the plan have yet to be negotiated with the city, the UFT leadership has failed to mobilize the membership to pressure the Bloomberg administration to negotiate with us in good faith. To be more precise, it has never even tried. There have been no rallies, not even petitions or postcards designed to force an unpopular mayor to budge. The mayor has indicated no willingness to back-down and the Union leadership has no strategy to force him to.
What would MORE do?
MORE believes our union’s strength lies with our members, organized in our schools, and allied with parents and community members. Instead of relying only on lawsuits and lobbyists our union should be organizing mass meetings of UFT members and community allies to plan and build protest actions that challenge business as usual and convince the Mayor that continuing to attack us is not worth the cost.
If you agree with us please join MORE so that together we can revitalize or union and build a real campaign to save public education.