Talk to Teachers? Not Barbara Kerr, CTA President!
It is sad and frustrating, that this union does not seem to care much for its rank and file members. Will I vote for Ms. Kern if she runs for another term as President of CTA ? NO. But then again, I did not vote for her at all. IN FACT, I was not even allowed to participate in the selection of candidates, the "election" of union officers or anything else hinting at this CTA/NEA being a democratic organization.
Years ago, during my first full-time teaching job in the wilderness of Northeastern Arizona, our local, the northeastern-most in the whole state, was visited by the President of Arizona Education Association, Dennis Van Roekel. I greatly appreciated and admired Dennis for making the trip up to see us and listen to our comments and concerns. It was a seven hour, (one way) drive from Phoenix to get to Red Mesa, AZ. It was great that Dennis took that much time to come visit us. And, he knew what classroom teachers were facing every day; he was not too long out of his classroom at Paradise Valley and into the job of President of AEA. IF you are familiar with the politics of the national teachers unions, you may know that Dennis Van Roekel is about to become President of NEA. I did not get to vote for Dennis either. BUT, he did take the time and make the effort to talk to his rank and file members. Something Barbara Kerr of CTA should learn.
Oh, and what questions was I planning to ask her ? I would of asked her to address the issue of a lack of democracy in CTA; why can't we, the rank and file members, elect our union officers or even have a say in approving any union dues increases. I would have asked her why CTA forced our local association to change our by-laws and constitution to make us a less democratic organization and to make it much more difficult for the rank and file members to hold local union leaders accountable for their actions or lack of actions. (This topic will be discussed in an upcoming blog, so stay tuned to THE VIEW FROM HERE if you are interested)
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