A Big Win for Tenure
The California Appeals court overturned a lower court decision in the Vergara v. California case, which had previously ruled that tenure and other job protections violated students’ rights to a quality education.
This is a significant victory, especially in light of other similar lawsuits such as Wright v. New York (which is still under consideration) and a suit that was just filed in Minnesota, both of which are modeled on the Vergara case. The Vergara plaintiffs have said they will appeal the case to the State Supreme Court, so it isn’t technically over. But since the case was very weak to begin with (the plaintiffs presented no actual evidence that tenure violates students’ rights), there is good reason to believe this decision will stand.
A Win for Unions
The Vergara decision comes less than a week after a court in Wisconsin threw out Scott Walker’s “right to work” law. The ruling held that “prohibiting [unions] from collecting fees from non-members to cover their share of collective bargaining costs constituted a ‘taking’ of private property without just compensation under the state constitution.” This is great news, but…
Walker’s “Act-10,” which gutted collective bargaining rights and eliminated tenure and other job protections, is still on the books. In fact, that law had been overturned by one court, only to be later upheld by the State Supreme Court, so it is very likely that this decision will follow the same path. Still, we can at least hope that this argument will gain traction elsewhere.
Get out and VOTE next Tuesday
As some of you may have heard, the New York Primaries are next Tuesday, April 19th.
SWRTA is not telling you who to vote for.
NYSUT is not telling you who to vote for.
What we are reminding you, though, is that if we want to be part of the conversation; if we want public education to be part of the debate; if we want our voices to be taken seriously, then we must be involved, and we must vote.
Put it on your calendar right now.