Sunday, November 2, 2014

Randi Weingarten Sings the Vichy Tune (Once Again) Via Cuomo

Lots of bloggers have been hammering Randi over the past few days so there is not much point in my joining the pack other than to point you to some of the links.

Perdido Street School parses the Weingarten response to the Cuomo attack on public education. But what else would we expect? It is really not worth much to expose Randi time and again as an apologist, if not an outright agent, for ed deformers.
"American Federation of Teachers president Randi Weingarten attributed Governor Andrew Cuomo’s characterization of public education as a “monopoly” to last-minute campaign rhetoric and called on teachers angered by the governor’s comments not to vote for G.O.P. candidate Rob Astorino as an alternative. “We’re in the political season. At the end of the day, … I’ll chalk it up to politics,” Weingarten told Capital on Friday when asked about the governor’s comments earlier in the week to the Daily News' editorial board.
Got it Randi. How about voting for Howie Hawkins as an alternative? Not on the table. See

NYC Educator says, Give Up the Ghost on Andy, Randi

AFT President Randi Weingarten dismisses it as campaign rhetoric, and has apparently taken the extreme step of responding with a strongly worded letter. Actually, we have no idea whether it's really strongly worded since the letter is not public. Nonetheless, a letter was written, a stamp was affixed to it, and an official government representative is likely dispatching it to our esteemed governor even as we speak.
Mercedes Schneider loves to parse Randi-isms and does so here: Weingarten Tries to Steer New York Voters Toward Cuomo.

Perdido came back with another shot today.

How Randi Weingarten And Other Union Leaders Help Andrew Cuomo Bring The "Death Penalty" To New York's Public School System

Just as interesting is how ed deformer Peter Cunningham, executive director of the Chicago-based nonprofit communications organization Education Post and a former assistant secretary in the U.S. Department of Education, wrote an open letter to Randi complaining that her rhetoric aimed at her own base defuses and confuses her support for basic ed deform(ers). Cunningham is vexes over Randi's jumping on the anti-now resigned (finally) LA Supt John (greasy) Deasey bandwagon expost facto - as she usually does.
In the interest of seeding progress, not scoring points, I offer the following feedback to American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten in response to her Oct. 22 speech to the West Coast Labor Management Institute in the wake of John Deasy's recent resignation as the superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District......
And that gets to your decision to go to Los Angeles a week after Mr. Deasy announced his resignation and give a speech where you cast your "longtime personal friend" as a "John Wayne" autocrat. The appearance felt more like a gloating dance in the end zone than a constructive appraisal of how to move forward.
Cunningham seems to be saying that Randi is turning against ed deform:
Wrapped in aspirational language about "collaboration" was a clear signal to your members that organized resistance to reform is the real strategy, and that the AFT supports it. The equally clear signal to reform leaders across the country is that they could be targeted next if they are not sufficiently "collaborative."
But he also points out how Randi has been so supportive of ed deform while also speaking out of the other side of her mouth:

While you've also challenged some of your allies to keep the debate civil, barely a day goes by without some public reference to "test-obsessed corporate reformers." Let's remember that you welcomed philanthropic support in the past and embraced many reform ideas that they support, including the use of test scores in part to evaluate teachers.
You concede that Teach For America has elevated the teaching profession, yet the AFT also funds United Students Against Sweatshops, a student group protesting TFA. TFA, an organization with proven results—even according to the Institute of Education Sciences—that is actively recruiting smart people to join your union and teach poor children is not your enemy.

 What's an ed deformer like Cunningham to do? You've all been counting on Randi to run a straight path to ed deform without detours to obfuscate the issue for the anti-deformers who might doubt that she is really Vichy.

Sometimes she DOES have to play a phony game for her base.

1 comment:

  1. Norm,

    You hit a home run on this one. I hope
    the bases were loaded.


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