Randi Weingarten attacks Gov. DeSantis for politicizing education

Source: Hot Air

Credit to AG Hamilton who caught this story and summed up the situation on Twitter this morning.

I think most readers are probably aware of who Randi Weingarten is but for those who aren’t she’s the leader of the American Federation of Teachers, the second largest teacher’s union in the country. She’s also constantly engaged in politics. Here’s something she tweeted today.

She’s also campaigning against Sen. Ron Johnson. This is from yesterday.

Yesterday she was with striking nurses.

Back in July 2020 Weingarten was saying there was no way schools could reopen in the fall:

“There’s no way that you’re going to have full-time schools for all the kids and all the teachers the way we used to have it,” Weingarten told John Catsimatidis on his AM 770 WABC radio show on Sunday. “Once we have a vaccine, I hope we can get back to that.”

The School Superintendent Association estimated that it would cost an average of $1.8 million per school district to adhere to guidelines set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to reopen this fall…

“And in doing this, not only is there a [need] for retrofitting, for ventilation systems, but also for buying the damned masks for the cleaning equipment, for the nurses that we’re going to need. That’s why we’ve been pushing really hard … To get the [federal] money that states need… to re-open schools,” Weingarten said.

In a speech that same month, Weingarten specifically singled out Gov. DeSantis for criticism because he planned to reopen schools. She noted proudly that her organization had helped a local union sue the governor.

…in Florida, despite the state’s still surging COVID-19 infection rates, the governor is ordering all public schools to fully reopen in August. So last week, with our help, the Florida Education Association filed a lawsuit against Gov. DeSantis.

In the same speech she went on to threaten strikes if union’s demands were not met.

Just as we have done with our healthcare workers, we will fight on all fronts for the safety of our students and their educators. But if authorities don’t protect the safety and health of those we represent and those we serve, as our executive council voted last week, nothing is off the table—not advocacy or protests, negotiations, grievances or lawsuits, or, if necessary and authorized by a local union, as a last resort, safety strikes.

The speech ended with a plea to elect Joe Biden and give him a Democratic congress to work with. So jump forward two years and Weingarten visited Florida this week to attack Gov. DeSantis for politicizing education and dividing “parents and teachers.”

American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten says she and her members are focused on helping students recover from the disruptions and the trauma of virtual learning — and she’s asking DeSantis to work with them, rather than trying to “divide parents and teachers”.

“We can help kids recover and thrive,” Weingarten said. “And we would ask the governor instead of smearing teachers, instead of calling them names, roll up your sleeves and work with us to actually help kids thrive.”

You have to admire her gall. After suing and threatening strikes to keep schools closed she now demands to know why the governor won’t work with unions. It’s a mystery!

Weingarten is also upset over what has been happening in Broward County. Last month a grand jury report looking at school safety in the wake of the Parkland shooting faulted four members of the Broward school board with fraud and mismanagement. Gov. DeSantis suspended them immediately.

The grand jury’s final report released on Aug. 19 found evidence of fraud and mismanagement and prompted Gov. Ron DeSantis to remove four school board members from office.

The report found school board members failed to hold district officials accountable for the mismanagement of the $800 million SMART Bond program, which was meant to fund school renovations and safety upgrades.

Construction delays, supply chain issues and cost increases mean the overall project has ballooned to $1.4 billion, nearly double the original estimate. The grand jury wrote that mismanagement is “costing the taxpayers of Broward County millions of extra dollars as projects fall literal years behind schedule and students continue to be educated in decrepit, moldy, unsafe buildings.”

Three Broward County school administrators also resigned in the wake of the final grand jury report.

The three staffers were named directly in the grand jury report for what the investigation found was their mismanagement of the botched roofing reconstruction effort and not sufficiently cooperating with the grand jury’s investigation…

Superintendent Vickie Cartwright told the three employees to resign, or they’d be investigated, according to the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.

“Again, it was one of those situations where I knew that we needed to take a look closer into…what had occurred. And then we met with the individuals and gave them choices,” Cartwright said.

So a lot of dead wood is being cleared out of a heavily Democratic school district and DeSantis selected four new members of the school board to replace the ones who were fired. Naturally the union doesn’t like that.

“Right here in our Broward County Public Schools, what [DeSantis] has done to our very own school board and some of our administrators in our central office,” said Broward Teachers Union president Anna Fusco, “no one can just stay silent anymore.”

And coincidentally, the Broward Democratic Party doesn’t like it either.

So that’s why Randi Weingarten was in Florida this week, because she’s a lefty unionist and a professional Democrat. Weingarten accusing anyone else of politicizing education is like Kim Kardashian complaining the media is too focused on celebrity gossip.

Here’s a local news report on Weingarten’s visit.

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