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AFT President Responds to Time Magazine Article

AFT President Responds to Time Magazine Article

Teachers are still outraged at Time Magazine's November 3 issue headline, and educators are sharing their opinions.

Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, responds to Time's "Rotten Apples" headline in an article on

"America’s teachers aren’t rotten apples, as Time’s cover suggests, that need to be smashed by Silicon Valley millionaires with no experience in education. Far from it," she said. "America’s teachers are national treasures, doing the most important job in our country—educating children for today’s democracy and tomorrow’s economy. They are making the promise of public schools a reality. Unfortunately, too often, they’re making it happen without the resources, support or trust they need to get the job done."

Weingarten said every time America's schools lose a teacher, "it costs us."

"More than one-third of teachers leave the profession before they’ve taught for five years," said Weingarten. "The National Commission on Teaching and America’s Future estimates that the high rate of teacher turnover nationwide costs more than $7 billion per year."

Tenure is not a job for life, said Weingarten. It’s "ensuring fairness and due process before someone can be fired, plain and simple. Where it’s become more than that, our union has worked to change laws and contracts. Because no one, particularly not teachers, wants people in our profession who aren’t cut out for it or shouldn’t be there."

"Here’s what Time’s cover story didn’t tell you: two-thirds of what affects student achievement actually occurs outside the classroom," she said. "That’s why we need to talk about poverty, about segregation, about violence in our neighborhoods and in our schools."

Read the full story. 

Article by Kassondra Granata, EducationWorld Contributor

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