The Cleveland Teachers Union (CTU) has done it again. Union leaders have spent nearly a year showing school children their education isn’t a priority.
Despite an agreement between CTU, the Cleveland Metropolitan School District and even Gov. Jim DeWine’s administration to get teachers back in the classroom by March 1, union leadership once again moved the goalposts, voting at the last minute to delay a return to in-person instruction.
CTU missed the original deadline of March 1, announcing instead that students would return in phases, beginning with special needs classes on March 8. Then on March 4, the union voted to delay reopening schools even further.
CTU leadership brazenly announced that, “The governor’s arbitrary deadline for school reopening has created an unreasonable and forced timeline that makes a safe and orderly transition from remote to hybrid impossible.”
Never mind that schools across Ohio are open and have been for weeks. Schools in other states have been open for months. As part of the deal, teachers in Cleveland were even moved to the front of the vaccine line.
Now, as the one-year anniversary of Ohio school closures looms, it appears CTU bosses are determined to keep Cleveland children under house arrest for as long as it takes to win concessions they couldn’t have at the bargaining table.
Is a dignified, humanized approach to in-person education during COVID impossible, unsafe, or simply inconvenient?
Increasingly, evidence suggests that a return to the classroom is not only possible but advisable.
Scientific fact, however, is not driving this particular conversation.
Leadership and members of CTU who support the reckless decision of continued virtual learning would do well to realize that patience is running low by parents, essential workers of all types, the medical community, the needlessly unemployed and the desperately lonely who have all navigated a way forward in these seemingly hopeless times.
The education sector is the only one in the entire U.S. economy to receive an increase in revenue while not being able to execute a plan to get back to regular business.
Given the generosity of U.S. taxpayers to increase this funding, a return to in-person instruction was possible months ago.
If those employed at big box stores had union representation that was as powerful and petty as teachers’ unions, residents would be scrambling for necessary goods and services.
This would not be tolerated. Not even by those in CTU.
The main difference is that Buckeye taxpayers have already paid for the educational services CTU is holding back.
We all agree America’s workforce makes civilized life possible. We are abundantly grateful for their willingness to do their jobs.
We can also all agree that at a time like this, Cleveland’s young people need heroes — not political showmen.
The Freedom Foundation believes these young lives are invaluable. They are worthy of sacrifice and cooperation to get back in the classroom and back to a quality education.
The Freedom Foundation also believes there are many teachers who have been wanting to get back with their students for a long time.
For the voiceless, fed up and disenfranchised teachers in Cleveland, we at the Freedom Foundation want to help you express your disappointment to your CTU leadership.
You can leave the union, stop paying dues, and stop funding these selfish CTU bosses accountable for the way they’re treating our children.