by Michael Kane
Recently the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) received a victory in a case known as WEINGARTEN vs. DEVOS. The AFT had sued the Trump Department of Education (DOE) then headed by Betsy Devos over college debt relief.
The Biden Administration just settled the case in AFT’s favor.
This is a win for Weingarten and AFT and is something I am happy to see. The debt relief program they were able to expand will help millions of working class educators and non-profit sector employees get out of debt sooner and cheaper.
However this begs the question if Randi Weingarten’s August announcement on MEET THE PRESS that she supported forced vaccination of her members, along with a Whitehouse appointed job to Weingarten’s wife, were part of a “deal” between the Biden administration and Weingarten / AFT.
When TEACHERS FOR CHOICE and I met with Weingarten in August when I brought up the conflict of interest in her wife working for the Biden Administration she got quite testy with me. It was the only time she lost her cool in the tense debate we had for over one hour. Personally I believe I had hit on a sore spot of hers.
All the big boys and girls who pay attention to politics know about horse trading and backroom deals. The Biden administration has no reason to fight an old case spearheaded by Trump’s Betsy Devos against their buddies at AFT. That is an easy give-away for them.
Apparently the bodily autonomy of her membership was an easy give away for Weingarten.
It is good to see the teachers in Chicago fighting back and getting a covid testing option placed back into the mix for their employment. Their union backed them and supported them. In NYC UFT President Michael Mulgrew rolled over completely and allowed Mayor de Blasio to get rid of unvaccinated educators, like myself, who are now currently on unpaid leave struggling to figure out how to survive and feed our families.
Good job Mikey!
Now in NYC we have staffing shortages crippling our schools and children being neglected over a political game that may have begun from a backroom deal cut by Weingarten and Biden. It is a shame the union and educators in NYC don’t have the sense or the backbone to see what they just gave up. I worry they will give up quickly on the biometric and tracking devices that are coming to New York schools in 2022.