*The National Education Association is the nation's largest professional employee organization.
*They have more than 3 million members.
*Their vision is a great public school school for every student.
*They believe in improving the quality of teaching and increasing student success.
*They are quite political.
To this non-union girl from Georgia, it all sounds rosy. In fact, this Georgia girl has even received a grant from the NEA Foundation. (I highly recommend applying and would even be happy to help!)
However, just like everything else in life-all that glitters is not gold. According to my friend (and NYC teacher,)
*Unions take money away from students.
*They are too political and their platforms do not equally represent all members.
*They are too involved in the actual teaching-when that should be left to educators.
Now, those are her opinions, not mine-but I value this input as I truly am trying to understand the power of NEA.
I interviewed Dennis Van Roekel, President of NEA, during Education Nation. Here are my takeaways:
*He respects teachers and wants them to have time to collaborate.
*He cares about kids.
*He may be a bit out of touch with what it is like to be in the classrooms.
*Who really is in charge of the NEA?
*He humors first grade teachers who always do a silly pose next!
I wish there were a dream organization that could magically fix education. Oh wait! I think there is-ORT! The Organization of Rockin' Teachers!
How do you feel about the NEA?