In response to news that a longtime Philadelphia school teacher has been diagnosed with Mesothelioma, members of the Fund Our Facilities Coalition held a press conference at the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers offices to call for an immediate $100 million investment to perform lead and damaged asbestos abatement in Philadelphia’s public schools. The figure makes up the bulk of the $170 million the Coalition has been calling for since May.
All summer long, many members have reported receiving letters and postcards from an organization called, “Free to Teach.”
Let’s be clear–Free to Teach is a project of the Commonwealth Foundation, an anti-worker, anti-public education, Koch Brothers- and DeVos family-backed “think tank” whose mission is to bust unions and feather the beds of corporate CEOs.
Attacks on public education in America by extremists and culture-war peddling politicians have reached new heights (“lows” may be more apt), but they are not new. The difference today is that the attacks are intended not just to undermine public education but to destroy it.
A push to raise the state's minimum teacher salary has become a bipartisan effort, but it appears to not be enough to ensure a key piece of Gov. Tom Wolf's budget proposal will make it into the final version of the spending document.
After years of declining state funding, waste and corruption, the Scranton School District has been made a "recovery district" by the state. With a recovery plan due in May, there's talk of closing schools in the financially struggling, impoverished district. But members of the Scranton Federation of Teachers have joined with community leaders to demand adequate and fair funding. Read more and sign a petition here.