Dark Money School Groups Are Trying to Buy the Midterm Elections for the GOP

As the Florida primary election results rolled in, in late August, Gov. Ron DeSantis publicly celebrated big wins in posts that traditionally have flown well-below the radar of governors: those of local school boards. This year’s school board races in Florida have received national attention, as dozens of political action committees (PACs) linked to leaders of the Florida GOP, including DeSantis, funneled money to right-wing candidates. And they didn’t do it alone. Also celebrating the school board victories and claiming them as their own were anti-public education groups like Moms for Liberty, a 501(c)(4) group that worked closely with DeSantis…

Teachers Make 23.5 Percent Less Than Other College Graduates, a New High

Amid reports of teacher shortages across the U.S. numbering in the hundreds of thousands, along with violent and vicious far-right attacks on public schools, new research shows that teacher salaries are now at record lows. A report published by the Economic Policy Institute (EPI) on Tuesday finds that, while there has long been a pay gap between teachers and comparable college graduates, that gap has recently reached its highest level since EPI began recording such data. In 2021, the report found, teachers’ weekly pay was 23.5 percent less on average than that of other college graduates, adjusted for age, education,…

Oakland Parents Occupy Elementary School to Prevent Its Closure

This story was originally published by Waging Nonviolence. On the last day of school at Parker Elementary, following tearful moving up ceremonies for fifth and eighth grades, one group of mothers — frustrated over a decision to permanently shutter the school — refused to leave. Over 50 days later, they’re still there, occupying the school alongside a network of community activists and other supporters. In the meantime, they’ve started “Parker Community School,” which offers free summer programming for schoolchildren and adults. Even as the next school year approaches, they’re refusing to back down, with plans to expand their efforts as…

Arizona Legislators Attack Public Education With New Universal Voucher Law

Last Friday, while the country reeled from the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade, Arizona made history of a different sort. Legislators in the Grand Canyon State passed a universal school voucher bill that, once signed by Gov. Doug Ducey, will become the most wide-reaching school privatization plan in the country. In his January State of the State address, Ducey called on Arizona lawmakers to send him bills that would “expand school choice any way we can,” and the Republican-dominated legislature obliged, delivering last Friday’s bill, which will open a preexisting program for Empowerment Scholarship Accounts (ESAs) up to the…

Supreme Court Protects Public School Coach’s Ability to Lead Students in Prayer

Supreme Court justices continued their far right crusade on Monday, handing down a decision that could open the door for public school teachers to compel their students to join them in prayer, eroding the already thin separation of church and state in the U.S. In a 6 to 3 decision, the Supreme Court’s extremist right-wing members ruled in favor of a Christian high school football coach in Bremerton, Washington, who has for years led students in prayer after games — and at one point, in the locker room — though he has reportedly stopped the practice. The Court’s three liberal…

The Supreme Court Is Now Forcing Taxpayers to Pay for Anti-Gay Religious Schools

Yesterday’s shameful Supreme Court ruling on Roe v. Wade was telegraphed months ago. But, during the angst-laden wait for the Supreme Court’s ruling on Roe, the court, so radically reshaped during the Donald Trump years, made hay trashing other vital precedents in its stampede to remake the country’s legal priorities in an extreme-right direction. This court will, with the Roe ruling and with a slew of other rulings from the past weeks, go down as arguably the most destructive court in United States history, certainly the most destructive in the post-Civil War era. The six members who make up the…

Abbott May Seek to Undo Decision That Grants Public Education to Immigrants

This article was originally published by the Center for Public Integrity, a nonprofit investigative news organization based in Washington, D.C. Next month marks the 40th anniversary of Plyler v. Doe, a landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision requiring public schools to educate all children, regardless of their immigration status. But with the high court potentially overturning decades-old precedent in the Roe v. Wade abortion decision, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott sees a potential opening to undo Plyler, which originated in his state. Abbott wants the federal government to cover the cost of educating undocumented children in Texas. He argues that the costs…

Instead of More Support, Schools Have Upped Demands on Teachers During Pandemic

In June 2020, when schools across the U.S. remained closed due to the pandemic, Bettina Love, author of We Want to Do More Than Survive, noted how much became possible when the system was forced to prioritize the lives of students, teachers and families. Laptops were distributed and internet access was provided. High-stakes, standardized tests were canceled. In many cases, grades were removed. She quoted a letter from a superintendent in Georgia who told teachers, “We want compassion over compliance.” Now, Love concluded, “We have to say that we’re not going back. The managing of inequalities, we’re not going back.”…

Translate »