Rouge Forum Update
WTU is one of the more notoriously corrupt locals of the American Federation of Teachers. Past leaders are in prison for embezzling hundreds of thousands of dollars of member money. One top WTU leader sued the others for similar activity in April.
The AFT is the more urban and smaller of the two US school worker unions. Other top AFT officials, like Miami's Pat Tornillo, are also in prison for embezzlement, while the former Broward County, Florida AFT boss is in jail for molesting children. Both served on key AFT boards which helped develop and promote the NCLB. The AFT in New York City, the bellweather local of the union, recently agreed to a merit pay scheme. AFT has overseen the near-complete collapse of urban schooling (Detroit would be a prime example) and done nothing of note but collaborate.
At issue is whether or not there can be sense made out of all of this---and sense then connected to organization. Only the Rouge Forum in the US has connected the wars, the NCLB, racist high-stakes exams, and the militarization of schools. We did that even before the NCLB existed, warning middle school teachers in 1997, "you are teaching the combatants in the next oil war." Here is a recent piece, one of many.
Our Rouge Forum Louisville conference adjourned with many, many suggestions for what to do: test boycotts, driving recruiters off campus, rejecting union concessions and building a spirited Fightback movement uniting school workers, parents and students, and organizing teach-ins for the fall as well as our own conference in 2009.
The Rouge Forum Steering Committee will take the lead in that. Meanwhile, could you spread the word of the Rouge Forum? Tell friends and colleagues that there is an organization fighting back, leading, and making the kind of sense that makes real solidarity possible. We don't live off foundation grants whose owners typically run the organizations they fund. We have no dues. Money comes strictly from volunteers. We seek to build a mass base of people who can forge the resistance against an opposition that is well organized and ruthless while, at the same time we build a caring community where people can demonstrate their own creativity and expertise. Ask others to join us!
The Rouge Forum No Blood for Oil (with those good-for-the-rest-of-your-life anti-war posters cheap!) is updated at www.rougeforum.org.
FAIR USE NOTICE
This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of education issues vital to a democracy. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information click here. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.