Labor Pains: Because Being in a Union can be Painful

Imitation is the Sincerest Form of Flattery

It’s a little unexpected, but we’ll take it: Al Sharpton has signed on to the Center for Union Facts proposition that teachers unions have made it too difficult to get rid of bad teachers, saying that education reform “includes getting teacher unions to make concessions in contracts so bad teachers can be fired.”

Why is he weighing in on the issue? Sharpton has pegged education as the leading civil rights issue of the day: “I think there is nothing more important as we commemorate 40 years after the assassination of Dr. King than the education crisis,” as he said at a panel hosted by his National Action Network. (Incidentally, we couldn’t agree more on the question of education as a civil rights issue, as this op-ed we published in January makes clear.)

It’s been a little while since our launch of, and we’d like to think our efforts to get the word out about how hard it is to get rid of a bad union-protected teacher are what motivated Sharpton to speak out. After all, since he’s based in New York City, he has surely seen either our massive billboard in Times Square or our full-page advertisement in the New York Times.

Categories: Teachers UnionsUncategorized