If teachers’ unions spent more time focused on ways to improve the deplorable quality of government-run schools, rather than intimidating anyone interested in the improvement of them, then there would be little need for innovative solutions like Louisiana’s recently created student scholarship program. But in typical union style, the Louisiana Association of Educators has acted like a schoolyard bully.
Last week the LAE’s attorney sent a “cease and desist”letter to each school participating in the program (including mine), threatening any means necessary, including a lawsuit, to prevent the implementation of the program.
Sent immediately after the LAE lost yet another legal battle to impose an injunction against the program, the letter smacks of the circular, vapid logic that has come to define the LAE’s rhetoric. The letter, for example, repeatedly refers to the program being “blatantly unconstitutional,”but never once provides a reason to substantiate such a spurious claim.
More important than this schoolyard tiff is the real issue that the LAE purposefully obscures by its expensive, protracted legal shenanigans: the necessity of our public schools being reformed. In the same way that the “educrats” and curriculum revisionists have egregiously diminished the quality of education that our children receive, their unions — which, by the way, represent only 12 percent of teachers in Louisiana, according to a study by The Center for Union Facts in Washington, D.C., based on figures from the National Center for Education Statistics — continue to be the obstinate obstacles to improvement.
But what the LAE and their attorney did not bargain for is that many of us involved in education in Louisiana are ready to break the yoke of power that the teachers unions have held for so many decades. Though we did not start this fight, we will finish it — and the children of Louisiana will be better off as a result.
Kevin Roberts, headmaster
John Paul the Great Academy