January 7, 2013
The 2012 EIA Public Education Quotes of the Year
EIA is proud to present the 2012 Public Education Quotes of the Year, in countdown order. Enjoy!
10) “The numbers of teachers are going up faster than are the numbers of students. That is a ticking time bomb. … With an economic downturn, the troubles with our economy, it’s hard to picture how school districts can sustain that increase and pay for it. I don’t see it as sustainable.”- Richard Ingersoll, a professor in the Graduate School of Education and Sociology at the University of Pennsylvania. (July 26 Detroit News)
9) “We bear a lot of responsibility for this. We were focused – as unions are – on fairness and not as much on quality.” – Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, commenting on the union’s traditional defense of seniority over performance. (August 18 New York Times)
8) “Trust me, if you can cut such deals with Randi Weingarten, who is president of the American Federation of Teachers, you can do them with Vladimir Putin and Bibi Netanyahu.” – Thomas L. Friedman, New York Times columnist, explaining why he supported U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan for Secretary of State. (November 27 New York Times)
7) “The office had a longstanding common practice of using profanity long before he got there.” – Josh Gruenberg, attorney for former San Diego Education Association executive director Craig Leedham, who was dismissed in part because of his style of dealing with employees. (May 21 Voice of San Diego)
6) “I find you and your organization wholly ineffectual and ineffective. Teachers cannot sit idly by facing financial ruin while you enjoy your wine and chocolates.” – Eric D. Przykuta, president of the Lancaster Central Teachers Association, in a February 17 letter to New York State United Teachers president Richard Iannuzzi.
5) “We had a very aggressive savings plan.”- Lynne Webb, president of the United School Employees of Pasco, explaining to a judge how she and her husband, former Broward Teachers Union president Pat Santeramo, who was indicted for racketeering and money laundering, were able to put away more than half a million dollars in CDs while paying off a $574,000 vacation home in just three years. (July 13 Miami Herald)
4) “I think people need reassurance that their tax dollars aren’t getting wasted, that something good is happening [at school] that can be measured. I understand that ferocious need, coupled with falling test scores, with the difficulty in removing teachers who aren’t performing and the unions’ unwillingness for a long time to look at how to change things – all those things made us ripe for the picking. Or the kicking.” – Rebecca Mieliwocki, 2012 National Teacher of the Year. (May 16 Los Angeles Times)
3) “If I’m a parent in poverty I have no clue because I’m trying to struggle and live day to day. The idea of parents making decisions simply based on choice is the abandonment of public schools.” – Michael Walker Jones, executive director of the Louisiana Association of Educators, commenting on Gov. Bobby Jindal’s plan to expand school vouchers in the state. (January 23 New Orleans Times-Picayune)
2) “We feel TFA is undermining our profession. We see TFA as a vehicle for union busting … the district is hiring uncertified teachers to reduce costs.” – Diane Brown, president of United Teachers of Richmond, speaking about Teach for America two weeks after her parent union, the National Education Association, provided her and other delegates with a report that concluded, “No evidence suggests that the TFA contracts are being used to reduce teacher costs, silence union voices, or as a vehicle to bust unions.” (July 18 San Jose Mercury News)
1) “Things will never go back to the way they were.” – from the introduction to the 2012-2014 National Education Association Strategic Plan and Budget.