Florida needs a teacher strike and that is the simple truth of it

Today in Orlando education activists and supporters met to discuss the dreadful state that Florida had become. My Facebook feed is full of optimistic pictures and texts. People have pledged to get and stay involve and to galvanize the public to get involved as well.

I imagine several hundred people left Orlando fired up about the future. The things is what’s different from 18, or 16, or 14 when we all pledged to work hard and elect pro education candidates? Nothing is what. We will never change the make up of the legislature and elect enough pro education candidates because the state has been gerrymandered to make sure it won’t happen.

Look at the last election when the state went republican by about a tenth of one percentage point but still republicans sent overwhelming majorities of legislators to Tallahassee. Elections won’t matter but a strike might.

People say we can’t strike. Well have we challenged that in court. Teachers in West Virginia were told they couldn’t strike and they did so twice and won.

People say teachers will lose their jobs. Well teachers are already leaving in droves and could they really fire us all? It’s projected that state wide next year we will already be 10k teachers short.

They say teachers can lose their pensions. Well most teachers today don’t have pensions because now days most teachers don’t make it 8 years to become vested.

I want to be optimistic and hopeful, I do. I am willing to wear red, march, write letters and blogs, and contact legislators until my fingers hurt, like i did this past year and the year before and the year before that, the thing is none of it mattered and I can’t see it matter going forward. The only thing that may work is a strike and the right to strike is what we need to fight for. Any of our leaders telling us different, advocating something different are just spitting in the wind.

All across the nation teachers are striking and wining, while Florida where it is probably worse than anywhere else calls for more of the same. Friends we have to do something while there is still something worth fighting for.

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