A Project Veritas video revealed two union officials with the Yonkers Federation of Teachers (YFT)—a New York affiliate of the American Federation of Teachers—brainstorming ways to protect an abusive teacher played by an undercover journalist. The planted (white) teacher, who hypothetically struck a minority student and then took a two-week vacation in Mexico without telling the school, admitted his “wrongdoing” to YFT President Patricia Puleo and YFT Executive Vice President Paul Diamond.
The response was shocking. “You don’t have to be honest,” explained Diamond, proposing to the plant to instead to “talk in theory.” Puleo suggested calling the two-week Mexico trip “family medical leave time” as “one way of covering it up.”
It doesn’t end there. When James O’Keefe, the journalist-turned-teacher, inquired about claiming medical leave to cover up the incident, Diamond suggested manufacturing a phony doctor’s note. In his own words, “Do you have a doctor who is a friend of the family?” Puleo was even clearer: “Don’t f***cking tell anybody.”
You can see the full extent of it here:
In light of the video, four members of the Yonkers City Council called for the resignations of Puleo and Diamond. And how did the union respond? By standing behind Diamond and telling him to “continue his union work.” (Puleo too will likely be spared of any punishment.) That “union work” doesn’t come cheap: Diamond’s base salary exceeded $132,000 in 2015.
It’s the same old script. Teachers unions defend even the worst teachers at all costs—often at the expense of students.