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Weingarten urges teachers to be their own check and balance

Others have said that she’s caved on mayoral control, or suggested that she never actually intended to challenge the mayor’s power as she promised.

I just stumbled on teachers union president Randi Weingarten’s own interpretation, buried in her latest column for the teachers union newspaper. She declares that she has not changed her position on mayoral control, saying contrary characterizations fail to see the nuance of her position.

Weingarten also unveils a new opportunity for teachers to act as “your own check and balance”: A new membership poll the union is conducting to evaluate the Department of Education and Chancellor Joel Klein. (A poll last year found widespread disapproval of Klein, and Weingarten purchased a New York Times advertisement to publish the results.)

The details on the new poll:

Accountability must flow both ways, so just as our members are held accountable up the chain of command, so must the system’s leaders be accountable in the other direction. In a few days you will receive from the American Arbitration Association a PIN which you can use to respond (confidentially) to our online survey. It consists of just a few questions about your opinions of some DOE actions and policies. If you respond by June 21, we can release the results at the year’s last Delegate Assembly on the 24th. So, as the year wraps up, there’s still plenty to do. Please watch the Action Alert box on our Web site at uft.org and respond when your chapter leader asks for help communicating with your state and city representatives, whether it’s to fight for budget restorations or for a better governance system. And take the opportunity to be your own check and balance by participating in our online survey. That’s one June chore I hope you will enjoy.