Education in the US

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.

Trump and DeVos deepen the assault on public higher education

By Nancy Hanover, 6 September 2017

Public universities and colleges in the US are being starved of funding, while the Trump administration escalates its support to for-profit institutions.

As school year starts teachers, parents and students face political struggle to defend public education

By Phyllis Steele, 5 September 2017

Nearly 50 million public school students are starting the new school year, along with more than four million teachers and support staff.

Poverty among Los Angeles community college students reaching crisis levels

By Glenn Mulwray, 26 August 2017

According to a recent survey, Los Angeles community college students are experiencing widespread homelessness and chronic food insecurity.

Chicago Public Schools lays off nearly 1,000 as budget impasse threatens more

By Alexander Fangmann, 23 August 2017

While CPS blames “enrollment changes, program adjustments and/or changes in students’ academic needs,” demographic changes alone do not account for the continued layoffs.

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.

Teachers’ unions attract few at “March for Public Education” in Washington, D.C.

By our reporters, 24 July 2017

The small turnout shows popular alienation from the unions, which have colluded in the attacks on teachers and public education.

Nearly $50 million in cuts planned for northern Virginia school district

By Harvey Simpkins, 4 July 2017

The cuts in Fairfax County, Virginia, which follow steep cuts last year, will affect class sizes, after-school programs and teacher hiring.

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.

An assault on free speech

Trinity College suspends professor over Facebook posts

By Josh Varlin, 1 July 2017

Professor Johnny Eric Williams’ suspension after a right-wing media campaign is a grave attack on academic freedom and democratic rights.

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.

Lead-tainted drinking water found throughout San Diego schools

By Jake Dean, 7 June 2017

A majority of schools examined so far have tested positive for elevated levels of lead in drinking water.

The New York Times uses “diversity” to find common ground with Education Secretary Betsy DeVos

By Nancy Hanover, 7 June 2017

The New York Times comes to the defense of Trump’s school privatizer.

“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.

Evergreen College professor harassed, slandered as racist for opposing “exclusion day” on campus

By Genevieve Leigh, 5 June 2017

After speaking out against a campus event in which all white students and faculty were “invited” to leave campus, Bret Weinstein was denounced by a group of students who have called for his resignation.

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.

Massive tuition increase at Oregon public universities

By Hector Cordon, 30 May 2017

52,000 students at two Oregon colleges will resume school in the fall burdened with hundreds of dollars in additional tuition, fees, housing and food costs.

School privatization critic Diane Ravitch offers advice to the Democrats

By Nancy Hanover, 30 May 2017

While Ravitch highlights the hypocrisy of the Democratic Party in criticizing the Trump administration's attack on public education, she has herself been an unswerving supporter of the Democrats.

Trump education budget calls for dismantling core programs, promotes vouchers and charter schools

By Evan Blake, 29 May 2017

The Trump-DeVos federal education budget seeks to cut $9.2 billion in spending through the elimination of 22 major programs and significant reductions in many others.

Charter advocates take over Los Angeles school board

By Dan Conway, 23 May 2017

The LAUSD school board election highlighted the role of America’s oligarchs pushing for privatization and the discrediting of the teacher unions.

San Diego, California school district pushes forward with layoffs and cuts

By Norisa Diaz and Toby Reese, 23 May 2017

Some 1,500 educators and support staff in the San Diego Unified School District have been finishing the school year with apprehension that they may not have a job next fall.

Union conceals district’s takeaway demands from Detroit teachers

By Phyllis Steele, 22 May 2017

So egregious were the school board’s demands that the Detroit Federation of Teachers executive board could not bring it back to rank-and-file educators.

Michigan partnership agreements only a temporary reprieve in statewide school closure threats

By Marissa Ross, 20 May 2017

The announcement of unprecedented mass closures sparked outrage among students, parents and educators across the state.

Trump administration education budget proposes $10.6 billion in cuts

By Shelley Connor, 19 May 2017

The budget would eliminate student loan forgiveness programs while simultaneously allocating millions of dollars to student debt collection and charter schools.

US education chief Betsy DeVos plots school privatization with venture capitalists

By Nancy Hanover, 15 May 2017

Addressing venture capitalists last week, DeVos made common cause with school privatizers looking to cash in on a “mind-boggling trillion dollar” education market.

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.

New York City officials red-bait public school faculty

By Daniel de Vries, 11 May 2017

A principal and two teachers are under investigation for alleged “communist activity.”

Higher education and upward mobility increasingly inaccessible to poor in the US

By Kathleen Martin, 5 May 2017

Higher education, seen as a key to social mobility in the US, is becoming increasingly unattainable to a growing section of the American working class.

Faculty strike at University of Illinois-Springfield

By Alexander Fangmann, 4 May 2017

Tenured and tenure-track faculty have been without a contract for 20 months and are demanding contract protections for tenure and promotion.

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.

Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos reverses Obama-era decision on student loan debt

By Kayla Costa and Genevieve Leigh, 21 April 2017

The decision to halt plans for a single vendor to service student loans, a process started under Obama, marks an escalation of the attack on public education and indebted students.

New York governor implements phony free tuition program for public higher education

By Fred Mazelis, 19 April 2017

The Excelsior Scholarship will reach only a small number of students, and will not cover most of the expenses associated with attending college.

Ultra-right libertarian to run the US Education Office of Civil Rights

By Nancy Hanover, 18 April 2017

A look at the ideological and political history of Candice Jackson, named by US Education Secretary Betsy DeVos to head up the education department’s Office of Civil Rights.

Chicago Teachers Union calls off one-day strike vote

By Kristina Betinis, 11 April 2017

Just hours before a scheduled vote on a one-day walkout union head Karen Lewis announced, “No, we’re not striking.”

No to San Diego school layoffs! Defend the right to high quality public education!

By the WSWS Teacher Newsletter, 11 April 2017

There is widespread opposition to the layoffs of 1,500 teachers and staff, but to fight, school workers must build a political movement against the squandering of resources on war and the interests of the super-rich.

Number of Americans defaulting on student loans reaches 4.2 million

By Philip Andrea and Genevieve Leigh, 10 April 2017

A new analysis by the Consumer Federation of America shows that the total amount of student debt owed has tripled in the last decade to a staggering $1.3 trillion.

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.

Trump’s education chief touts Uber as model for “school choice”

By Nancy Hanover, 1 April 2017

DeVos hailed Trump’s budget proposal to cut $12 billion from the Department of Education.

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 two

By Esther Galen, 22 March 2017

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

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.

Los Angeles school district sends layoff notices to 1,600 administrators

By Dan Conway, 18 March 2017

The layoffs are part of an ongoing attempt to gut public education in the nation’s second largest school district.

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.

Teacher describes impact of social crisis in Toledo, Ohio schools

By Phyllis Steele, 13 March 2017

Public school teachers are being scapegoated for the school problems produced by poverty and decades of educational cutbacks.

UAW blocks strike by New York University adjuncts despite 94 percent authorization vote

By Alan Whyte, 10 March 2017

NYU has been intransigent in its opposition to adjuncts’ demands despite the fact the university has an endowment of about $3.5 billion.

Rockford, Illinois public school employees set to strike next week

By George Gallanis, 8 March 2017

The AFSCME union is limiting the action to a three-day walkout to blow off steam and curtail the growing combativeness of workers.

Michigan school closures “on hold” while privatization plans move ahead

By Khara Sikhan, 8 March 2017

After a statewide outcry, Michigan temporarily backed away from school closures even as Betsy DeVos’s home state paves the way for a nationwide assault on public education.

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.

Corruption probe at City College of New York points to decline of public higher education

By Fred Mazelis, 4 March 2017

The president of CCNY was forced to resign last October after she was targeted in a corruption probe which continues to expand.

New York University professor Bertell Ollman supports IYSSE fight for club status

By Isaac Finn, 4 March 2017

An IYSSE representative recently sat down with NYU professor Bertell Ollman to discuss the issues around the club application process at NYU.

Student walkouts oppose Trump’s vicious immigration policies

By Nancy Hanover, 3 March 2017

Young people across the US, opposing the Trump administration’s raids, roundups and arrests, have become outspoken in their defense of the democratic rights of all ethnicities and nationalities.

“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.

Confirmation vote as farce: Senate approves billionaire enemy of public schools as secretary of education

By Niles Niemuth, 8 February 2017

Betsy DeVos, who “earned” the position through her family’s donation of $200 million to support Republican candidates, is a supporter of charter schools and privatization.

New York University and the military-university complex

By Isaac Finn, 27 January 2017

The US military/intelligence apparatus exercises immense influence over the school’s political and intellectual life.

Senate moves toward confirmation of billionaire opponent of public schools

By Isabelle Belanger, 25 January 2017

The Senate will vote January 31 on the confirmation of Betsy DeVos, the billionaire proponent of school privatization.

US student loan corporation faces lawsuit for cheating millions

By Seb Gomez, 24 January 2017

Student loan collector Navient faces allegations of misleading borrowers and other illegal practices that increased the loan repayment costs for millions.

Low turnout for University of California workers’ one-day strike

By our reporters, 11 January 2017

Teamsters Local 2010, which represents over 12,000 UC administrative, support and clerical staff, staged a limited one-day strike Tuesday.

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.

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.

University of Florida students speak out about food insecurity

By Matthew MacEgan, 14 December 2016

A new report shows that more than 400 universities across the United States now have food pantries to help financially distressed students get the nutrition they need.

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.

Illinois governor vetoes $215 million in pension funding for Chicago teachers

By Alexander Fangmann, 6 December 2016

Rauner’s veto, which could result in deep school cuts, was widely expected by the Chicago Teachers Union, which concealed this from teachers in order to block a strike and push through concessions.

Trump names opponent of public schools to head Department of Education

By Eric London, 26 November 2016

An organization that billionaire Betsy DeVos led and financed for a decade recently published an article advocating the return of child labor.

Unions, aided by the pseudo-left, push through poverty-level wage deals

Lessons of the Harvard University Dining Services strike

By Mike Ingram, 23 November 2016

The strike by Harvard dining workers provides political lessons for others facing poverty-level wage deals negotiated by the unions with the support of ostensibly left organizations.

Income and racial segregation grows in Virginia public schools

By Alex Gonzalez, 21 November 2016

Segregation in Virginia public schools has increased by 60 percent since 2003.

Nearly one-third of Chicago teachers reject CTU concessions deal

By Alexander Fangmann, 3 November 2016

The Chicago Teachers Union on Tuesday announced the ratification of a concessions-laden contract.

Vote by Chicago teachers on concessions contract begins today, after postponement

By Kristina Betinis, 31 October 2016

The decision by the Chicago Teachers Union to delay the vote by two days, supposedly to allow teachers to read the contract, is an indication that there is widespread opposition.

Mobilize the working class to defend public education

Vote “no” on the CPS-CTU concessions contract!

By the Socialist Equality Party, 26 October 2016

The agreement, fraudulently presented as a “fair deal” by the Chicago Teachers Union and the Chicago Public Schools system, is a further attack on teachers and public education.

As school funding cuts continue

Clinton and Trump committed to new attacks on public education

By Nancy Hanover, 24 October 2016

A new report throws into sharp relief both the advanced stage of decay of American public school education and the hostility to it of both Trump and Clinton.

Union ends strike at Pennsylvania state campuses, pushes concessions

By Samuel Davidson, 22 October 2016

Union leaders ordered 5,500 striking faculty and coaches to take down picket lines Friday, caving in to management demands for salary and benefit cuts.

Five thousand faculty strike at Pennsylvania state campuses

By Samuel Davidson and Douglas Lyons, 20 October 2016

The strike by Pennsylvania faculty is an expression of growing social opposition among different sections of workers in the run-up to the US election.

Chicago Teachers Union House of Delegates approves concessions contract

By our reporter, 20 October 2016

Both district officials and union leaders are hailing as a success a contract that will escalate the attack on teachers, while paving the way for the closure of more public schools.

Chicago charter school union announces contract deal

By Jeff Lusanne, 20 October 2016

The American Federation of Teachers has helped craft a new contract for charter school teachers in Chicago that mirrors a concessions contract accepted for public school teachers.

The International Socialist Organization campaigns for layoffs, school closures in Chicago

By Eric London, 19 October 2016

A tentative agreement announced by the Chicago Teachers Union, and praised by the ISO, would mark a new stage in the attack on teachers and on public education.

Harvard students and faculty show support for HUDS strikers

By Kate Randall and Mike Ingram, 18 October 2016

Harvard students walked out of classes Friday in support of dining room service workers who have been on strike for 12 days.

Cleveland teacher denounces sellout contract

By Phyllis Steele, 18 October 2016

Teachers rejected a contract backed by the unions and the entire political establishment that would accelerate the attack on public education.

Food safety concerns as Harvard dining workers’ strike enters second week

By Mike Ingram, 15 October 2016

The ongoing strike by Harvard dining workers has led to concerns over food safety amid reports of under-cooked food being served to students.

The International Socialist Organization and the Chicago teachers contract betrayal

By Marcus Day, 13 October 2016

The ISO-led Chicago Teachers Union is doing everything in its power to force its second concessions contract in four years onto angry and defiant teachers.

Chicago teachers denounce contract sellout

By Kristina Betinis, 12 October 2016

As teachers angrily denounce concessions in the CTU’s tentative agreement, the International Socialist Organization is painting the settlement as a victory against Rahm Emanuel.

Chicago Teachers Union announces concessions agreement to avert strike

By Kristina Betinis, 11 October 2016

The agreement was announced before midnight in order to prevent a strike and risk a rebellion by teachers against the Democratic Party ahead of the presidential elections.

Boone County, West Virginia students lack textbooks

By Clement Daly, 8 October 2016

Following the imposition of deep budget cuts to public education, many students lack basic science textbooks.

West Virginia: Seven Fayette County schools to be shuttered

By Joe McGee, 7 October 2016

The number of schools in the rural county would be reduced from 18 to 11, leaving only two high schools open.

Harvard dining hall workers strike over health insurance, wages

By Kate Randall, 6 October 2016

The strike by Harvard University Dining Services workers is the first since 1983, and the first ever during the academic year.

Faculty set October 19 strike date at Pennsylvania universities

By Samuel Davidson, 6 October 2016

Professors and faculty members at Pennsylvania’s 14 state-run universities have voted overwhelmingly to go on strike against cuts to health benefits and the expanded use of adjunct professors.

Michigan attorney general asserts right to close dozens of Detroit schools

By Nancy Hanover, 1 October 2016

On Wednesday Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette ruled that dozens of “failing” public schools in Detroit could face closure at the end of the school year.

As union heads scramble to settle

Chicago teachers set strike date

By Kristina Betinis, 30 September 2016

After nearly a year and a half without a contract, the teachers union has set a walkout date for October 11.

Long Island University lockout ends with contract extension and no issues resolved

By Alan Whyte, 19 September 2016

The union, which has pledged not to strike through the 2016-1017 school year, also agreed to mediation in future negotiations for a settlement.

Detroit Federation of Teachers pushes through sellout contract

By Nancy Hanover, 19 September 2016

Educators greeted the agreement with anger and skepticism in the face of the concerted attempts by the union to derail their struggles over the course of the last year.

Vote “No” on Detroit Federation of Teachers’ contract!

By Nancy Hanover, 12 September 2016

The American Federation of Teachers is demanding that educators acquiesce to low pay, overcrowded classrooms, unsafe buildings and more school closures.

Report reveals Pennsylvania charter schools pocket cash meant for student spending

By Douglas Lyons, 10 September 2016

Pennsylvania charter schools are siphoning away more funds from public schools than they spend on students.

Long Island University-Brooklyn locks out 400 professors

By Daniel de Vries and Allen Whyte, 9 September 2016

LIU’s action marks the first time a university has used a lockout to impose concessions on faculty.

Long Island University faculty and students oppose lockout

By a WSWS reporting team, 9 September 2016

Faculty and students spoke with the WSWS about LIU’s lockout of 400 faculty members at the beginning of the fall semester.

Detroit teachers angered by contract deal

By Marissa Ross, 8 September 2016

Detroit teachers received contract “highlights” at a mass meeting called by the Detroit Federation of Teachers and will begin voting next week.

ITT Tech shuts down after federal government withholds student funding

By Nick Barrickman, 8 September 2016

The closure of the for-profit school’s 130 US-based campuses came after an investigation questioned the institution’s organizational integrity, financial viability and academic standards.