Teachers in Los Angeles have been on strike for over a week. Now, it seems the LA teachers’ strike has reached a tentative agreement, with a decent raise and a few other concessions. What isn’t concluded is anything definitive about the issue that’s really driving all of this: Charter schools. All that was agreed to, according to this New York Times article below is this: “In a summary released by the union, the agreement also includes a pledge that the elected school board for the district will vote on a resolution asking the state to “establish a charter school cap” and create a governor’s committee on charter schools.”
This is a fraud. The present level of charter schools is already bleeding public education dry. And it’s certain that the cap won’t be below what exists in LA or Oakland.
According to the LA Times, the agreement includes a 3% pay raise for last year and a 3% pay raise for this year. Teachers had been calling for a reduction in class size. The agreement reportedly calls for a reduction in class size by one student this year, one next year and then two the following year.
According to the LA Times, an issue that was extremely important to students – who had massively supported the strike, was the issue of random searches of students. The LA Times reports: “The district also agreed to expand to 28 the number of schools that will no longer conduct random searches of middle and high school students. That provision was especially important to students who marched in support of their teachers.” We don’t know in how many schools these random searches were being carried out, but the schools should never have what amounts to stop and frisk in any school.
Oakland teachers beware. They’re going to try the same thing here. And remember this: W. VA. teachers were so effective because their strike was state wide. That’s what’s needed in California. “What?” you say. “That would be illegal.” Well, as Trump and the corporations are proving every day, “legal” is what you can get away with. If it takes everybody going out to enable the teachers to get away with a state-wide strike, then so be it! Maybe we could stay out until the end the government shut-down, give full pay (plus back pay plus the previously scheduled raise) to all federal workers, win a $5/hour pay increase for all, kill the Wall once and for all, and release all asylum seekers. Now, that would be a real victory!