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Randi Weingarten at a Massachusetts high school

Summer is upon us, and parents, children and teachers are winding down from what has been an exhausting and fully operational school year—the first since the devastating pandemic. The long-lasting impact of COVID-19 has affected our students’ and families’ well-being and ignited the politics surrounding public schools. All signs point to the coming school year unfolding with the same sound and fury, and if extremist culture warriors have their way, being even more divisive and stressful.


What unions do


In AFT President Randi Weingarten’s latest New York Times  column, she describes what it is exactly that unions do. Though unions are the most popular they have been in decades, anti-union sentiment still thrives in red states and across the nation. “Several years ago, The Atlantic ran a story whose headline made even me, a labor leader, scratch my head: ‘Union Membership: Very Sexy,’” Weingarten writes in the column. “The gist was that higher wages, health benefits and job security—all associated with union membership—boost one’s chances of getting married. Belonging to a union doesn’t actually guarantee happily ever after, but it does help working people have a better life in the here and now.” Click through to read the full column.

Randi Weingarten and NYC teacher Tamara Simpson

Attacks on public education in America by extremists and culture-war peddling politicians have reached new heights (“lows” may be more apt), but they are not new. The difference today is that the attacks are intended not just to undermine public education but to destroy it.


Check out this neat video of AFT Alabama lending a helping hand to St. Mary's school in Mobile, AL.


Our thoughts and prayers go out to those affected by the recent storms. If you are a member of AFT and if there is anything that the Alabama American Federation of Teachers can help with please call one of our offices at 205-933-1124, 205-933-2237, 205-933-3333, or email us at,, and let us know.

By Richard Franklin and Vi Parramore
Michelle Rhee 013112.JPGStudentsFirst Founder and CEO Michelle Rhee will hold a town hall meeting in Birmingham on Thursday.
Nothing is more important for the future of our children and, frankly, our democracy, than getting public education right.
Since the 1983 release of the National Commission on Excellence in Education’s “A Nation at Risk” report, there has been a sense of urgency to improve our public schools and reduce the achievement gap.
Urgency is good if it leads us down the path to great public schools for all children. But sadly, the urgency has been used to fixate on