National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation President issues statement in recognition of National School Choice Week
Washington, DC (January 30, 2020) – Mark Mix, president of the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, issued the following statement in recognition of National School Choice Week 2020:
This week, as we encourage parents to explore and choose the education that will best serve the needs of their children, we must also recognize that teacher union officials are constantly posing threats to this freedom. For decades, they have engaged in sustained political campaigns to undermine school choice, often specifically targeting charter schools and charter school teachers. But despite that opposition, charter schools have enjoyed steady growth and popularity.
So union officials have taken the fight into charter schools themselves. Coast-to-coast, teacher union bosses have employed coercive tactics to foist their so-called ‘representation’ onto charter school educators. This puts charter school students and teachers at risk: Many of them were attracted to charter schools precisely because they reject the one-size-fits-all approach promoted by national teacher union bosses.
Take, for example, Gompers Preparatory Academy in San Diego, California. The school made an impressive transition in 2005 from a traditional public school to a charter school after a campaign by parents, teachers, and administrators who believed that school district and union bureaucracies were not serving the students’ interests, especially by failing to combat the gang violence and teacher attrition at the school.
In 2019, after being unionized with a controversial ‘card check’ drive that bypassed the more reliable method of holding a secret ballot vote, Gompers teachers began circulating a petition for a vote to remove the union. Despite the teachers having more than enough signatures to trigger a vote, union officials are already trying to block the decertification election from taking place.
Charter school employees are entitled to certain constitutional and statutory rights, but unfortunately union officials frequently attempt to keep employees in the dark about those rights. That is why National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys have provided direct, free legal aid to over 10,000 teachers since its founding, including the teachers at Gompers, and why the Foundation has its Charter School Initiative. Foundation-won legal precedents have also expanded the workplace rights of millions of teachers across the country.
Led by National Right to Work Foundation staff attorneys, the National Right to Work Foundation’s Charter School Initiative aims to enlighten charter school employees about their rights so that they can make decisions about union representation in an atmosphere free of union boss threats, harassment, coercion, or misrepresentation. To that end, Foundation attorneys have developed free educational materials for charter school teachers and other employees. Furthermore, Foundation staff attorneys are prepared to defend charter school employees from the injustices of forced unionism.
Charter school teachers and other employees: You have rights. For more information about your rights and the Foundation’s Charter School Initiative, check out our website at http://www.nrtw.org/charterschools.”
The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization providing free legal aid to employees whose human or civil rights have been violated by compulsory unionism abuses. The Foundation, which can be contacted toll-free at 1-800-336-3600, assists thousands of employees in more than 250 cases nationwide per year.