October 21, 2013
NEA Membership Numbers Continue to Slide. The National Education Association lost an additional 61,000 active K-12 members during the 2012-13 school year, bringing the union’s cumulative losses to almost 300,000 working public education employees since 2008-09.
The NEA student program also took a beating, losing almost 11 percent of its members in a single year.
The loss of members will leave NEA with about $10.2 million less than it otherwise would have had, though it appears the union’s 2013-14 budget anticipated the shortfall.
I have no data on which states suffered what losses, but membership losses impact NEA state affiliate activities much more than those at the national level. State affiliates are likely to lean heavily on NEA funding for ballot initiative and legislative battles in the coming year. NEA national expects to have $38 million available to distribute for those purposes in 2014.
Last Week’s Intercepts. EIA’s daily blog, Intercepts, covered these topics October 15-21:
* Can’t Make This Stuff Up. Plan to show “how bargaining works for the benefit of public schools and the public school employees” leads to union grievance.
* Union Evaluates Teacher Knowledge… of Union. The standardized test of the year.
* NEA & AFT Affiliates in Michigan Form Partnership. Based on national model?
* Navel Gazing. Unions and the belly button tax.
* Washington State Districts Held Steady During Recession Years. Better off than many.
Quote of the Week #1. “Oliver Stone is the history teacher, and if you think of every approach you would not use for reaching your most disengaged students, you’ll get a sense of Stone’s instructional strategies. He drones on while the camera zooms in on the clock ticking and students falling asleep at their desks.” – Rachel Nobel of the United Federation of Teachers, commenting on the reality TV show Dream School, in which celebrities help teach dropouts. (October 16 Edwize)
Quote of the Week #2. “The kids were far better than this, and my experience was far more connective, an example of what this reality mentality does to all of us.” – Oliver Stone, illustrating that if he can’t teach, he’s at least learned the standard response to evaluation. (October 7 Starcasm.net)