Union President to Parents: Problems With Schools Are You, Not Us

Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy has been making the rounds throughout the state, promoting his education reform plan, which he has promised will be “the most far-reaching in our state’s history.”

The Democratic governor wants to increase the number of charter schools and revise teacher tenure and seniority, among other things.

When Gov. Malloy stopped at Brookside Elementary School on Monday, he was greeted by Bruce Le Vine Mellion, president of the local teachers union, who handed the governor “an envelope containing a brief report entitled ‘Elementary Students in Crisis,'” writes CTNews.com.

The report provides a valuable insight into the thinking of today’s teacher unions.

On the page entitled “Concerns about Elementary Students,” the report states too many children “are ‘unavailable for learning,'” and finds that “out of control students impact learning and decrease the academic time available for other children.”

(Savvy readers will recognize this as a pre-emptive strike against evaluating teachers based on student performance.)

“Elementary teachers feel they are in a ‘war zone,'” the report reads.

“Stress levels for teachers are very high due to … working with these students,” the report states, which is causing teachers to “have health issues.”

The report concludes that parents deserve much of the blame.

“Some parents do not know how to access services … to meet the needs of the children,” it reads, adding that other parents “are in denial and blame the school or the teacher for their child’s behavior.”

The report offers a nine-point plan for solving these problems, including: “Parent sits in class to monitor child” and “Parent holds child accountable.”

According to the union, the state of public education is this: Students may be “Waiting for Superman,” but their teachers are “Waiting for Supernanny.”

Malloy’s commitment to reform obviously has the unions desperate to change the conversation to the failings of parents and away from the unions’ role in creating the mess in public schools.

When it comes to students not learning, apathetic parents certainly deserve some of the blame. But since we’re unaware of any law that can force adults into becoming caring parents, legislators are wise to focus on what they can control – i.e. what occurs inside the classroom.

Parents who are tired of all the excuses might be interested in attending an education rally at the state capitol next Wednesday. The Connecticut Parents Union is hosting the event, which will include remarks from former D.C. Schools Chancellor and StudentsFirst Founder Michelle Rhee. Kelley Williams-Bolar, the Ohio mother who was arrested and convicted for illegally sending her children to an out-of-district school, will also address the audience.

The event occurs on March 14, beginning at 3 pm. Additional details can be found on CTPU’s website.