A massive debt bailout for embattled Detroit schools has passed. Half a billion dollars just went *poof* for the school district, but Democrats and teachers are livid.
A sharply divided Michigan legislature voted to create a new, debt-free school district in Detroit, a decision Gov. Rick Snyder called an “unprecedented investment” in the city’s children.
The city’s teachers union, however, called the package approved late Wednesday inadequate and politically motivated. One Democratic lawmaker called it “a farce.”
If signed by Snyder, the legislative package would strip the existing Detroit Public Schools of their educational responsibilities and transform the district into a vehicle for paying off $500 million in debt that has sapped classroom funding.
Republican Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof called the package a “thoughtful compromise.”
“This package of bills resolves a half billion dollars in debt, provides resources necessary for DPS to transition to a new, debt-free district and returns the school district to a locally elected board at the earliest possible election date,” he said.
Wait for it…. wait for it…
But the city’s teachers disagree. On Thursday morning the Detroit Federation of Teachers was promoting a petition on its website calling on Snyder to veto the bills, calling the package “punitive, petty and dangerous for the people of Detroit.”
“The fact that these bills target only Detroit with unpopular and untested education experiments and anti-union measures shows this is not about what’s best for the children of Detroit — it’s about how the Michigan House can exert power over the people of Detroit,” the AFT petition said.
Emphasis added by me. What they’re really saying is that since unions will lose their power as a result of this bill, their paychecks are going to be directly affected.
“This is people playing political games while showing an utter disregard for children’s futures,” the union said, according to WDIV.
Uh huh. Children don’t need unions, and unions end up costing taxpayers too much money in the long run. What has their union done for them over the history of the disintegrating shabby schools of Detroit anyway? It’s gotten the teachers paid more than they’re worth, but it’s done nothing for the children of Detroit.
Teachers protested by staging “sickouts,” forcing most of the district’s schools to close as teachers called in sick as a form of protest. Teacher strikes are illegal in Michigan. Read more…
And there you have it.