Mark Mix, president of the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, issued the following statement in recognition of National School Choice Week 2022:
On School Choice Week 2022, the importance of protecting the right of parents to select their own children’s education is more important than ever. Over the past year, radical teacher union officials continued to wield their government-granted monopoly bargaining powers to impose controversial, top-down policies that harmed parents, kids, and independent-minded teachers.
Government school lockdowns pushed by politics-obsessed union chiefs like the American Federation of Teachers’ Randi Weingarten devastated American kids. Teacher union bosses’ coercive government-granted privileges allow union chiefs to hold the education of kids hostage to union political demands. Monopoly bargaining lets union officials push aside the interests of parents and children, but it also forces independent-minded teachers under union control they oppose.
Teachers from elementary schools all the way up through public colleges oppose union officials’ monopoly powers too, taking issue with the workplace policies or political views of the union hierarchy. In fact, a group of Jewish City University of New York professors just filed a federal lawsuit challenging New York State’s law allowing the Professional Staff Congress union to impose its so-called ‘representation’ on them – ‘representation’ they find to be very anti-Semitic.
No less an advocate of unions than Franklin Delano Roosevelt once cautioned that “All Government employees should realize that the process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public service.” Roosevelt was right, and since COVID-19’s arrival there’s been more than enough evidence of the havoc teacher union boss control has wrought on kids, parents, teachers, and the public at large.
Without school choice, parents and kids would have no option but to bear this top-down control, so it makes sense that citizens are leaving union-dominated government schools in record numbers. For much the same reason, teacher union bosses oppose giving parents choices like charter schools, because those options threaten union boss monopoly control over education.
School choice, while a basic right that all parents should enjoy, shouldn’t be a last resort parents employ simply to get their kids out of unstable union-dominated schools. Teachers, as well, shouldn’t have to flee traditional public schools just so they can escape being forced to associate with a private organization espousing views or policies that they abhor.
The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, assists thousands of employees in around 250 cases nationwide per year.