NEA Representative Assembly 2016: Delegates Plan to Live on Deserted Island

The last batch of new business items (NBIs) contains four illustrations of how some delegates believe the wider world exists merely as a means of support for the public education system.

NBI 92: “NEA shall create an informational report by collating existing information published in reputable sources on the extent, avenues, trends and impacts of privatization in public education. For the purpose of this informational report, ‘privatization’ is defined as ways in which public education dollars are spent on private products, services, and organizations, as well as commonly noticeable ideological impacts of corporate interests on public perception and political landscape in education. Results shall be published to state and local affiliates using existing communication channels as well as in a press release.”

NBI 109: “NEA will not accept monetary sponsorship or be affiliated with any foundation, corporation or politician that is linked to the negative public education reform movement and/or has participated in the privatization of public education.”

NBI 116: “The NEA will call for a national boycott of all Walton owned businesses including Wal-Mart, Sam’s Club and Arvest Bank until they cease to seek profit by investing in the creation of competitive charter schools and the takeover of traditional public schools through the Walton Family Foundation.”

NBI 123: “NEA will encourage its affiliates’ Political Action Committees not to endorse any candidate for local or state office who accepts Charter School PAC money.”

The first one might pass, which would be good, because it might help those who wrote it learn just how dependent public education is on “private products, services, and organizations” – and where those “public education dollars” come from.

The other three will fail unless amended in some way. If you only associate with people who agree with you, you end up with a smaller and smaller group that you only see four days a year at a convention.