In yesterday's Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Alan Borsuk reflects on the new slogan of MTEA, the MPS' teacher's union.
Here's the slogan:
Our Schools! Our Solutions!
This is precisely what the union should not be saying. Part of the problem with MPS has always been that the MTEA really did regard the schools as "theirs" and only the solutions that "they" countenance could be permitted - all of which seemed to have the fortuitous side benefits of serving the organization and its controlling members. No choice and only a few non-union charters. No merit pay. Seniority. No effective way of getting rid of poor of teachers. No fiscal sanity.
"Our" schools, said the union. "Our" solutions.
Our way or no way.
Unfortunately, given the politics of the city of Milwaukee, the school board generally went along.
The result is not only an ineffective system but schools on the verge of financial collapse. It has resulted in unparalleled flight of poor minority kids to choice schools and an exodus of the middle class from what is otherwise a very pleasant city.
The union ought to recognize that the schools aren't "theirs" and the whatever solutions may exist have passed them by. It ought to understand that it needs to "rethink" not only schools, but itself.
Instead, it doubles down.
Cross posted at Purple Wisconsin.