Saturday, September 17, 2011

Republicans Declare War on Educators!!

Here we go folks.  Get ready to do battle.  A slew of anti-teacher legislation is on a fast track in Lansing.
  • Sen. Randy Richardville introducing Right to Teach legislation
  • House Bill 4929 passes and would prohibit school districts from deducting union dues from your paycheck
  • SB 1618 (Pavlov) if passed would privatize teachers and eliminate cap on charter schools
  • SB 593 if passed would force new teacher hires into a define benefit retirement plan
  • SB 619 expand cyber charter schools removing all restrictions and caps on the number and operation of them
  • SB 620 if passed would allow parents or teachers by a 51% vote turn their local public school into a charter school
  • Rumor is (no bill yet) there is movement afoot to eliminate health care for teacher retirees!!
And the list goes on and on.  In passing HB 4929, Rep. Haveman (R-Holland), sponsor of the bill, said the legislation isn’t an attack on teachers. “It allows them to have more money in their pockets and that’s a good thing.”
Are you kidding??  What does he think we are going to do with the money, go out and buy a car?  Following this Republican logic—does that mean the 3 percent tax on pensions and the 20 percent contribution to health care are bad things?

Then there is Sen. Randy Richardville.  He doesn't even try to hide behind the argument that a Right to Work (for less) law for teachers only would somehow be good for kids and good for reforming education.  He was on Tim Skubic's Off the Record show and stated afterwards to reporters, "I've come to a point where I've seen that I do not believe that the teachers union represents teachers well at all, nor does it represent the students. What they've been doing is working hard, twisting arms and putting us in places that we can't afford to be."
According to Gongwer News Service, he went on to call teachers "more than greedy" and said the MEA was now about "big-paid, high-honcho people. 
He has blatantly stated the MEA needs to stop the recall efforts against Republican legislators in Michigan.  The "Right to Teach" bill is political payback, pure and simple!  This is also a brutal example of an elected official abusing his position and power to advance a personal and party philosophy against a specific organization that differs in their approach to improving education in Michigan. 

SB 1618, Sen. Pavlov thinks allowing private companies to come into a school, fire all the teachers, then rehire them (at a significantly reduced salary), or simply hire all new teachers is somehow going improve the education of your students!
All of this flies in the face of what our democratically elected officials are in government to do, represent the people, period!  If you value your way of life, if you value your position to educate children, then you must let these people in Lansing know you will not stand for this any long.  Folks, they are out to destroy public education any way they can.  And if we let them win, the biggest losers will be our students!   Read more about all of this at and call, e-mail, or write Richardville, Pavlov, Sen. Walker, Rep. McMaster, and Rep. Foster.   Please "cc" or copy any correspondance you do to MEA President Steve Cook at  Seems that several Republican leaders have publically stated MEA members have not contacted them in opposition to this junk or members have stated they are in favor of what they are doing.  Lets set the record straight, send a copy of your correspondance to President Cook.


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