The Defense of Public Education

Arizona teachers prepare for statewide strike

By Jerry White, 23 April 2018

As the week starts, teachers in Arizona and Colorado prepare walkouts as part of the rebellion of educators spreading across the US and internationally.

Arizona teachers vote to strike

By Jerry White, 20 April 2018

More than three-quarters of the 57,000 Arizona educators who cast ballots voted for strike action, which is scheduled to begin next Thursday.

Anger grows over union effort to sabotage Oklahoma teachers strike

By Jerry White, 14 April 2018

Thousands of teachers showed up at the state capitol Friday in a show of defiance against the unions and school officials trying to break their two-week strike.

“The unions are trying to shut down a growing nationwide movement”

Oklahoma teachers denounce Oklahoma Education Association’s move to end strike

By Niles Niemuth in Oklahoma City, 13 April 2018

Teachers reacted with anger and a determination to continue the strike following a back-to-work order announced by the OEA Thursday afternoon.

Union seeks to shut down strike: The way forward for Oklahoma teachers

By Jerry White, 13 April 2018

The formation of rank-and-file committees is the basis for taking the conduct of the struggle out of the hands of the anti-working class organizations that call themselves “unions.”

Oklahoma walkout in danger as Arizona, Kentucky teachers press for strike action

By Jerry White, 12 April 2018

Rank-and-file teachers took to social media to denounce the Oklahoma Education Association (OEA) for trying to tamp down their demands and end the strike.

Mass turnout at state capitol as Oklahoma teachers’ strike enters second week

By Jerry White, 10 April 2018

The walkout shut down schools serving at least 500,000 of the state’s 700,000 public school students on Monday, and scores of districts have announced that schools will be closed Tuesday.

Tuition hikes at Portland State University spark outrage

By Kayla Costa, 10 April 2018

Students contrasted the six-figure salaries of university officials with the heavy burden on working class students.

Nashville parents, teachers and students decry public school cuts

By Keisha Gibbs and Warren Duzak, 9 April 2018

Public schools in Nashville, Tennessee face cuts to free food programs and elimination of funding to schools with impoverished students.

Unions seek to hijack, shut down Oklahoma teachers strike as support for expanded struggle grows

By the Socialist Equality Party, 9 April 2018

As the strike by tens of thousands of Oklahoma teachers and support staff enters its second week, workers face a critical crossroads.

“We need to stop putting profits above pupils”

As Oklahoma strike enters fourth day, students speak out in support of teachers

By Jerry White, 5 April 2018

Most school districts in the state have closed today because of the walkout, with many others cancelling classes through Friday.

Loyola Chicago adjunct faculty hold one-day strike

By Alexander Fangmann, 5 April 2018

The 350 liberal arts and other faculty were joined by several hundred students, alumni and other supporters.

“This is not the civics lessons we’ve been teaching … we’re going to see more of this!”

Thousands of Kentucky teachers rally to oppose cuts

By J. Cooper, 4 April 2018

Not only teachers and school support staff, but parents, bus drivers, firefighters, emergency responders and others attended the rally at the state capitol.

Interview with a teacher from Greece: “Teachers have the same problems worldwide”

By Marianne Arens, 2 April 2018

Evangelos, a teacher from Greece working in Germany, expressed his solidarity with teachers in the US and reported on the recent teachers’ strike in Greece.

Build rank-and-file committees to unite with teachers in Arizona and Kentucky!

Mobilize the working class behind striking Oklahoma educators!

By the Socialist Equality Party, 1 April 2018

The statewide strike in Oklahoma is part of an expanding wave of struggles by educators across the United States and internationally.

“This is not just about raises, it is about restoring funding”

Oklahoma teachers reject funding bill, prepare to strike

By Jerry White and Todd Denton, 30 March 2018

More than 40,000 Oklahoma teachers are preparing to walk out on Monday in defiance of anti-strike laws and the sabotage of the unions

York University conspires with Ontario government to break contract-faculty and assistants’ strike

By Roger Jordan, 30 March 2018

Although the Liberals are manifestly preparing to illegalize the strike, CUPE is doing nothing to mobilize the working class in support of the 3,000 striking contract-faculty and graduate assistants.

Attend online and call-in forum March 27

The way forward for UK lecturers after the revolt against the University and College Union

24 March 2018

The Socialist Equality Party (UK) is hosting an online and call-in forum for lecturers, college staff, other education workers and students on Tuesday, March 27, at 7:30 p.m.

Teachers unions intensify efforts to suppress growing class struggle in the US

By Jerry White, 20 March 2018

A recent article by a former top executive at the American Federation of Teachers argues that the unions exist to “maintain labor peace” and “tamp down rank-and-file gripes and discord.”

Teachers in Jersey City begin strike as demands for walkouts expand across the US

By our reporters, 17 March 2018

The Jersey City strike is part of a growing wave of working-class opposition in the US, following the shutdown of the West Virginia teachers strike earlier this month.

Oklahoma Senate rejects pay raise as teachers ready for strike

By Shannon Jones and Todd Thompson, 16 March 2018

The state legislature rejected a proposal for a pay hike that fell far short of teacher demands for a $10,000 raise.

Nationwide protests, high school walkouts to oppose school shootings in the US

By our reporters, 14 March 2018

Thousands of students are walking out at high schools throughout the US today, in opposition to school shootings.

As Trump’s education secretary threatens deep education cuts

Teachers’ struggle spreads to Oklahoma, Kentucky and Arizona

By E.P. Milligan, 13 March 2018

After the nine-day strike in West Virginia, educators in other states are coming into conflict with the unions, which are trying to block a unified struggle for increased wages and funding for public education.

After nine-day West Virginia strike

Demands for teacher strike action expand across the US

By Nancy Hanover, 12 March 2018

Educators in Oklahoma, Kentucky and Arizona are organizing protests and strikes on social media to oppose years of concessions and budget cuts.

Movement for teacher walkouts in Oklahoma, Kentucky, New Jersey and Arizona

Spreading wave of working class unrest in the US follows West Virginia teachers strike

By Will Morrow, 10 March 2018

The ruling class and the trade unions are desperately seeking to control social opposition and prevent demands for walkouts from developing in the direction of a general strike.

As teacher struggles spread, unions redouble effort to suppress class struggle

By Jerry White, 9 March 2018

In the aftermath of the nine-day strike by West Virginia teachers, American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten said that the unions are necessary to contain opposition.

Australian teachers salute courageous stand of striking teachers in West Virginia

By our reporters, 7 March 2018

Teachers in Victoria and New South Wales, Australia’s two most populous states, have expressed powerful support for the struggle being waged by their counterparts in West Virginia.

Thousands converge on state capitol to show support for West Virginia teachers strike

By Jerry White, 6 March 2018

Teachers, school bus drivers, and custodians from across the state converged on Charleston as the walkout of 33,000 school employees continued.

Reject the sellout deal that robs Medicaid from school children

West Virginia teachers have the right to vote on any return to work!

By Jerry White, 6 March 2018

On Tuesday morning, the West Virginia governor and the unions announced that a deal had been made to shut down the teachers’ strike.

“I think they should keep striking”

Chicago Ford workers speak out in support of West Virginia teachers

By George Marlowe and Andy Thompson, 6 March 2018

Chicago autoworkers expressed their support for the West Virginia teachers on strike and denounced the conditions they face.

Support grows for striking West Virginia teachers as decisive week starts

By Jerry White, 5 March 2018

The strike by more than 33,000 teachers and support staff has entered its eighth day and a new and decisive stage.

Form rank-and-file committees to expand the strike!

The way forward for West Virginia teachers

By the Socialist Equality Party, 5 March 2018

The SEP urges striking teachers and school employees to go from impromptu meetings and rallies to the election of rank-and-file strike committees to mobilize the entire working class.

UK education workers send messages of solidarity to striking West Virginia teachers

By our reporters, 5 March 2018

Education workers in the UK send messages of support to the striking West Virginia teachers.

Why Richard Ojeda is not a fighter for the working class

By Eric London, 5 March 2018

The Democratic West Virginia state senator is being presented by the corporate media as a tough-talking friend of the working class. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Kenya lecturers’ strike paralyzes public universities

By Eddie Haywood, 5 March 2018

The lecturers have vowed to continue the strike until their demands for increased salaries and funding to upgrade facilities are met by the government.

All West Virginia schools closed today as teachers’ rebellion continues

By Jerry White, 2 March 2018

Teachers and school employees have courageously defied the efforts by the unions, Democrats and Republicans to end their strike.

Jacobin, Socialist Alternative and the ISO hailed union deal rejected by West Virginia teachers

By Niles Niemuth, 2 March 2018

The upper-middle class organizations jumped at the opportunity to promote the unions’ efforts to end the struggle.

The revolt of the West Virginia teachers

By Joseph Kishore, 2 March 2018

The rejection by West Virginia teachers of the unions’ efforts to shut down their struggle is one among many signs of growing working-class militancy in the United States.

Demand a statewide vote before any return to work!

Reject the sellout of West Virginia teachers’ strike!

By Jerry White, 28 February 2018

There is widespread anger among teachers over the sellout deal agreed to by the West Virginia Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers-West Virginia.

Anger mounts over sellout of West Virginia teachers’ strike

By Jerry White, 28 February 2018

Union leaders announced Tuesday evening they were shutting down the statewide strike and ordering educators back to the classrooms Thursday.

All-out support for the West Virginia teachers!

By Jerry White, 27 February 2018

The World Socialist Web Site calls for the urgent mobilization of all sections of the working class to support striking West Virginia teachers.

West Virginia teachers strike at the crossroads

By Jerry White, 26 February 2018

The unions and the Democratic Party are working frantically behind the scenes to contain and smother the statewide strike.

“The politicians don’t want to fund education; they’d rather fund war”

Teachers speak out on the struggle in West Virginia

By a reporting team, 26 February 2018

Educators in Michigan, New York and Arizona, as well as West Virginia, spoke to the World Socialist Web Site in support of the striking West Virginia teachers.

“We need an uprising of the people to put a stop to this”

West Virginia teachers call for expansion of their struggle

By Lawrence Porter, 24 February 2018

A World Socialist Web Site reporting team spoke with teachers protesting outside the state capitol in Charleston on Friday.

West Virginia teachers carry out state-wide strike

By Jerry White, 23 February 2018

In the first teachers strike in nearly three decades, nearly 15,000 West Virginia teachers, school bus drivers and other school employees walked out Thursday.

“We are tired of waiting”

West Virginia teachers demand quality pay, health care

By our reporters, 23 February 2018

The WSWS spoke to many of those participating in a rally of thousands of teachers and their supporters in Charleston, West Virginia on Thursday

West Virginia legislature issues ultimatum to teachers as statewide walkout begins

By Shannon Jones, 22 February 2018

On the eve of a scheduled statewide walkout by West Virginia teachers, the state legislature issued a take-it-or-leave-it deal backed by legal threats.

Growing opposition to public education cuts in Oklahoma

By Todd Thompson, 22 February 2018

Teachers are calling for a statewide “sickout,” while students at two schools have staged recent walkouts.

Mounting protests, walkouts by US students against school shootings

By Kate Randall, 21 February 2018

Protesting students have aimed their fire at local politicians, the US Congress and President Trump over their failure to do anything to stop school shootings.

“This struggle should be spread nationally”

Two-day statewide teacher walkout planned in West Virginia

By Nancy Hanover, 21 February 2018

As teachers gear up for a two-day walkout, the unions are doubling down on legislative horse-trading focused on keeping opposition confined to the Democratic Party.

Thousands rally to defend teachers in Charleston, West Virginia

By Niles Niemuth, 19 February 2018

This weekend’s protest is the latest expression of working-class anger over social inequality throughout the US and internationally.

The political issues facing West Virginia teachers

By the WSWS Teacher Newsletter, 16 February 2018

Thousands of West Virginia teachers, school employees, state workers and supporters are protesting today to demand the right to a decent standard of living and high-quality public education.

Minnesota school district removes To Kill a Mockingbird and Huckleberry Finn from the curriculum

By Sandy English, 14 February 2018

The Duluth school board has decided to stop teaching two literary classics, To Kill a Mockingbird and Huckleberry Finn, because of their frequent use of racial slurs.

Russian teacher fired after criticizing low salaries

By Clara Weiss, 10 February 2018

The teachers wrote that in 2017, their monthly wage was 8,289 rubles ($145), the same amount as in 2012, despite 50 percent inflation since then.

Columbia University refuses to recognize graduate student union

By Isaac Finn, 9 February 2018

Columbia University in New York City has refused to recognize the Graduate Workers of Columbia-United Auto Workers (GWC-UAW) Local 2110 as the bargaining agent for student workers on campus.

West Virginia teachers hold one-day strikes and statewide protests

By Nancy Hanover, 3 February 2018

West Virginia teachers have not had a raise since 2014, and are presently ranked 48th in the nation in average salary.

To reduce costs Texas officials slash special education enrollment

By Todd Thompson, 3 February 2018

Texas deliberately set about to deny access to special education services, in knowing contravention of federal rules.

Amidst cuts to special education and school closure protests

Chicago Public Schools appoints new CEO

By George Marlowe and Andy Thompson, 2 February 2018

After the resignation of the previous school chief, Chicago Public Schools officials have appointed a new CEO groomed by the political establishment to ramp up the attack on education.

Students and staff to bear brunt of latest Australian university funding cut

By Mike Head, 20 January 2018

A two-year freeze on funding for undergraduate enrolments will be followed by pro-business “performance targets” imposed on university funding.

Australia: NSW state government axes longstanding reading program from public schools

By Erika Zimmer, 19 January 2018

“Reading Recovery” has been taught for more than 30 years, achieving significant results in improving literacy among disadvantaged students across New South Wales.

Budget cuts lead to teacher and student injuries at Massachusetts school

By Julian James, 18 January 2018

Last year the school eliminated special classes for students with major behavioral and learning challenges.

“Keep fighting, we have to come together”

Educators denounce attack on Louisiana school teacher Deyshia Hargrave

By Nancy Hanover, 15 January 2018

WSWS Teacher Newsletter readers explain their support for the Louisiana teacher who was arrested for speaking out at a school board meeting last week.

“This is an outrage! The marshal should be arrested for assault”

Massive outpouring of support for victimized Louisiana teacher

By Nancy Hanover, 12 January 2018

The arrest and jailing of Louisiana teacher Deyshia Hargrave has prompted outrage throughout the US and internationally.

As teachers face new battles against Trump

Lessons of the fight against Obama’s “school reform”—Part 2

By Nancy Hanover and Jerry White, 6 January 2018

Taken together, the seminal struggles of teachers and other public sector workers in Wisconsin (2011), Chicago (2012) and Detroit (2015-16) contain powerful political lessons for the defense of education and workers’ rights.

As teachers face new battles against Trump

Lessons of the fight against Obama’s “school reform”—Part 1

By Nancy Hanover and Jerry White, 4 January 2018

Taken together, the seminal struggles of teachers and other public-sector workers in Wisconsin (2011), Chicago (2012) and Detroit (2015-16) have powerful political lessons for the defense of education and workers’ rights.

Oakland, California school board set to enact mid-year budget cuts

By Jonathan Burleigh, 12 December 2017

The austerity measures will further undermine education in a school district that has already faced deep cuts.

Growing numbers of US teachers abandon unions

By Nancy Hanover, 7 December 2017

The historic decline of union membership among teachers highlights the extent to which these unions exist only at the behest of the government.

Tens of thousands being dropped from US student loan relief program

By J. Cooper, 15 November 2017

After working in low-paying public service jobs for more than ten years, thousands who thought their loan balances would be forgiven are bitterly finding otherwise.

DeVos visits Puerto Rico to boost privatization of public schools

By Rafael Azul, 10 November 2017

The US education secretary met with her Puerto Rican counterpart, who is looking at post-Katrina New Orleans as the model for the schools in US territory.

With medical and health benefits cut

Palatine, Illinois school district support staff return to picket lines

By George Marlowe, 30 October 2017

Many of the workers make starvation wages as low as $11 an hour, pay high out-of-pocket health care costs and are forced to work a second or third job just to make ends meet.

US confronts critical teacher shortage

By Khara Sikhan, 4 October 2017

Decades of defunding public education, standardized testing and the demonization of teachers has resulted in a national crisis in education in the United States.

Trump’s secretary of education rolls back Obama-era regulations on campus sexual misconduct

By Nancy Hanover, 2 October 2017

The most significant change involves the standard of evidence to determine if an assault has occurred and if colleges are required to take action.

Burlington, Vermont teachers strike continues as officials refuse to budge on concession demands

By Kate Randall, 18 September 2017

The 400 teachers went out on strike Thursday after nine-hour negotiations between a mediator, the Burlington’s Democratic mayor and the Burlington Education Association broke down.

Teachers strike in Burlington, Vermont over health care cuts, working conditions

By Jerry White, 15 September 2017

More than 400 teachers walked out on strike in Burlington Thursday, after efforts by a mediator, the city’s Democratic mayor and the Burlington Education Association failed to prevent the strike.

Peruvian teachers strike as Kuczynski’s government plunges into crisis

By Armando Cruz, 23 August 2017

Reportedly, more than 200,000 teachers in 18 regions of the country are participating in the strike, making it one of the largest in the last decade.

As teachers narrowly ratify concessions deal

Billionaire’s Detroit sports arena to take $34.5 million in school tax money

By J. Cooper, 2 August 2017

Detroit public schools will lose millions of dollars due to continuing handouts to the city’s billionaire developers.

Detroit Federation of Teachers accepts merit pay, other concessions

By Phyllis Steele, 3 July 2017

The Detroit Federation of Teachers is attempting to impose yet another round of concessions on teachers who have suffered years of givebacks, layoffs and eroding school conditions.

Michigan eliminates pension plan for new teachers

By Walter Gilberti, 30 June 2017

The supposed reform of pensions in Michigan is part of a broader attack aimed at rolling back all the gains won by workers in decades of struggle.

Los Angeles and San Diego teachers’ contracts set to expire at the end of the month

By Jake Dean, 15 June 2017

While the contracts are set to expire at the same time there is no attempt by the teachers unions to wage a unified struggle against the wholesale assault on public education.

“This is a new world we’re seeing with Betsy DeVos”

Detroit-area charter school shuts doors, leaves teachers unpaid

By Debra Watson, 5 June 2017

Teachers at the Southfield, Michigan school learned only last week that Renaissance, which calls itself a school turn-around specialist, has run out of money.

Tuition hikes implemented throughout the United States, placing ever growing financial burden on students

By Kayla Costa, 3 June 2017

Students returning to school can expect to pay even more on top of already unaffordable tuition rates.

Chicago school district moves to fire activist teacher

By Kristina Betinis, 12 May 2017

The Emanuel administration is aiming to make an example of Chambers to intimidate and silence teachers who oppose education cuts, high-stakes testing and school privatization.

Massive enrolment decline at Illinois public colleges and universities due to state budget impasse

By Alexander Fangmann, 1 May 2017

Republican governor Bruce Rauner, abetted by the Democratic Party, is using the budget impasse to force through wide-ranging cuts and consolidations.

Australia: Growing opposition to sell-out agreement among Victorian teachers and support staff

By our reporters, 29 April 2017

Teachers from at least five schools have convened meetings to reject the agreement between the Australian Education Union and the Victorian state Labor government.

Argentine teachers launch protest strike

By Rafael Azul, 17 April 2017

Last week’s national teachers strike against police repression was part of growing struggles against the government’s attacks on jobs, living standards and democratic rights.

How the AEU is attempting to push through a sell-out of Victorian teachers

By Susan Allan, 17 April 2017

If the agreement is such a “significant gain” then why is there no framework or democratic process where teachers can discuss, debate, and seek clarification on its contents?

Majority of students cannot afford 95 percent of US colleges

By Kathleen Martin, 8 April 2017

Tuition hikes and funding cutbacks have effectively educationally crippled millions of working class students and youth.

Chicago teachers to vote on one-day strike

By Kristina Betinis, 30 March 2017

As part of the latest round of cuts, the administration of Mayor Rahm Emanuel has threatened to end the school year nearly three weeks early.

San Diego teachers union facilitates the layoff of 1,500 educators

By Norisa Diaz and Archie Stone, 25 March 2017

The WSWS spoke with some of the educators who received pink slips earlier this month at informational meetings held by the San Diego Education Association.

Trump’s voucher plan and the right-wing campaign to destroy public education

Part one

By Esther Galen, 21 March 2017

The budget proposed by the White House slashes public education funding but adds $1.4 billion to promote private and charter schools and school vouchers.

Rockford, Illinois public school employees go on strike

By George Gallanis, 16 March 2017

While school workers have demonstrated their determination to fight, behind the scenes AFSCME officials are seeking to cut a deal that will accept the bulk of management’s demands.

San Diego Unified School District to cut at least 1,500 jobs

By Kevin Martinez, 6 March 2017

School Board Trustees who approved the layoffs cited the district’s $124 million budget deficit.

“If you don’t have an education, you don’t have a life”

Teachers speak out on the schools crisis and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos

By Nancy Hanover, 23 February 2017

Teachers spoke to the WSWS on the Trump administration and the attack on public education.

“If you attack one school, you attack them all”

Anger grows over Michigan school closures

By Shannon Jones, 20 February 2017

As opposition mounts to the threat by state officials to close dozens of schools in Detroit and other cities, the unions and Democrats are stepping in to smother it.

Baltimore public schools face $129 million budget deficit, plan mass layoffs

By Ron Barzel and Brad Dixon, 20 February 2017

The current deficit amounts to 10 percent of the entire budget for the Baltimore City school system, which has an enrollment of around 82,000 students.

How the Democrats paved the way for Betsy DeVos

By Jerry White, 10 February 2017

Nowhere in the realm of domestic policy is the continuity between Trump and previous administrations seen more than in the assault on public education conducted by both parties.

An attempt to appease anger over student loan debt

New York Governor Cuomo proposes free tuition for state and city university systems

By Josh Varlin, 11 January 2017

Whether or not Cuomo’s proposal is enacted this year, it is clearly aimed at appeasing the anger among workers and young people at growing inequality and attacks on living standards.

Disability services privatised and targeted for more cuts in Australia’s public schools

By Susan Allan, 5 January 2017

An already under-funded scheme for providing disability services to public school children in the state of Victoria is to be targeted for further cuts.

Betsy DeVos: Religion and profit in the war on public education—Part 2

By Nancy Hanover, 14 December 2016

Under the banner of “free enterprise,” Trump’s pick for education secretary has combined religious obscurantism with American hucksterism and the promotion of militarism.

Betsy DeVos: Religion and profit in the war on public education—Part 1

By Nancy Hanover, 13 December 2016

Under the banner of “free enterprise,” the DeVos family has combined religious obscurantism and bigotry with American hucksterism, exploitation, tax dodging and the promotion of militarism.