Last updated on: 9/23/2014 | Author: ProCon.org

California Federation of Teachers Biography

Position:
Pro to the question "Should Teachers Get Tenure?"
Reasoning:

“Stripping Teachers of their workplace professional rights will harm, not improve students learning.

Anti-public education ‘reformers’ are forever repeating that rules and regulations make it impossible to fire ‘bad teachers.’ Here are the facts. During the first two years of a teacher’s career, a lengthy probation period, administrators can fire them for any reason, or for no reason at all. After that, the requirements are for the administrator to document the problem necessitating the teacher’s dismissal, and convince two out of three people on a panel of experts to agree. That’s it. A teacher’s simple right to a hearing before dismissal is not unfair to students. To the contrary: students need a stable, experienced teaching workforce, not a revolving door of educators…

The [tenure] laws targeted in this case provide due process when a teacher is accused of misconduct or poor performance, and objectivity in times of layoff. These laws benefit the education system as a whole…

The need for academic freedom, and therefore for ‘tenure,’ was demonstrated repeatedly, for instance, during the McCarthy era. Note also the case of Sal Castro, an historic figure who advocated for ethnically relevant courses for Latino students in Los Angeles in the 1960s. The district dismissed him essentially for being an advocate for students and he was only able to get his job back when the community organized for mass actions and took over the school board to get him reinstated.”

“Teacher Rights Overturned by Court Decision,” cft.org, June 10, 2014

Description:

“The California Federation of Teachers is a union of professionals affiliated with the more than 1.4 million member American Federation of Teachers, and through it with the AFL-CIO. The CFT is made up of the state’s 136 local unions chartered by the AFT. Each local is affiliated with its regional AFL-CIO Central Labor Council and the California Labor Federation. Through its local unions, the CFT represents more than 120,000 educational employees working at every level of public and private education from Head Start to the University of California.”

“2013 CFT Fact Sheet,” cft.org, June 2013

Mission:

“In all segments of education, CFT is committed to promoting quality education and to securing the conditions necessary to provide the best services to California’s students.”

“2013 CFT Fact Sheet,” cft.org, June 2013

Other:
136 local unions in five councils
Quoted in:
Pro & Con Quotes: Should Teachers Get Tenure?