NEA and IEA losing membership cred on SB7 lies.
The unelected Executive Director contradicts the membership’s views of Senate Bill 7.
Maybe some of our folks were confused a year ago about Senate Bill 7.
Then IEA President Ken Swanson lied to local leaders and members that this was teacher-led school reform.
Some of us didn’t buy it. But I understand why some did. Why would the leadership mislead us?
That was then and this is now.
Anybody who is paying attention knows that Illinois Senate Bill 7 is a disaster both for downstate teachers and Chicago teachers.
In the only democratic vote taken by the membership on the issue of Senate Bill 7 by the main governing body of the IEA in March, unelected IEA Executive Director Audrey Soglin was directed to document the damage Senate Bill 7 has caused.
I haven’t heard anything about the progress of her investigation.
But the subtext of that directive was that teachers already know there is widespread damage.
And yet, as I reported in a previous post, the unelected Executive Director continues to spin the baloney that Illinois Senate Bill 7 was teacher-led reform. This week she sat on a panel with Illinois Senator Lightford at the National Council of State Legislators and continued to argue it. It doesn’t pass the laugh test.
Arguing this nonsense in front of legislators from around the country is hugely dangerous. It does the dirty work of corporate school reformers like Stand for Children.
But there is an even bigger danger.
When the leadership continues to spread a story that the membership simply knows is not true, it undermines their credibility for the struggles ahead.
The present elected leadership is saddled with the view of the unelected Executive Director which is at odds with the experience and expressed views of the members.
The elected leadership has asked for our trust as they maneuver through the difficult issues involved in preserving our constitutional rights to our pensions.
But their credibility is now at risk because of the Executive Director.