In the heated Senate Bill 5 debate, we certainly have heard from a lot of teachers. Supporters of the law have been accused of “attacking teachers”, which is, of course, ludicrous.
Being a dad, I work and communicate on a regular basis with my son’s teachers. My family has been very fortunate to have excellent teachers, who really do care about their kids. I have enormous respect for them and the job that they do.
But that doesn’t mean I believe they should have power over their employers, meaning the community, to dictate the terms of their employment. Ohio’s current collective bargaining laws give teachers and other government employees an upper hand over their employers, which takes control of the government away from the voters, and gives more of it to the union bosses. That isn’t right.
And believing that that isn’t right, is not an attack on teachers, or an attack on the middle class. The “attack” meme is a smokescreen being used by the Democrats and the unions to hide the real issues of this debate.
We should also remember that in most cases in Ohio, a teacher must join the union, because Ohio is not a right-to-work state. There are many teachers in Ohio who would choose not to join the union, if they had the choice.
But not everyone is joining the rally against SB-5. Earlier this week the Association of American Educators (a group of non-union teachers) issued the following statement:
“The fact that Senate Bill 5 will save over $1 billion a year is a testament to the years of out-of-control demands by the unions. This law should be of no surprise to the leadership who have been overreaching for too long. Clearly lawmakers and voters aren’t listening anymore to the overreaching mentality of the unions. If this is really about the children, as the teachers union claims, we need fiscal discipline and more efficient ways of running our schools, not insurmountable debt. Everyone wants to see educators paid fairly without the threat of layoffs. The union’s over asking, overreaching model has created this problem, leaving legislators to take the heat when tasked with bailing out the sinking ship that is the state budget.”
AAE appears to be an organization that is actually dedicated to excellence in teaching, instead of being dedicated purely to political power, like the teachers unions are. Good for them. Its too bad most teachers in Ohio don’t have the option of choosing AAE over the power-hungry unions.