L.A. Teachers Strike Dispatch #9: What We Won

The United Teachers of Los Angeles strike was enormously popular, with tens of thousands of parents and students joining already full picketlines. There were many intangibles won, including but not limited to:

·       We learned that despite the PR hatchet job the anti-union, anti-public school forces have waged for the past 25 years, the general public still very much believes in public education and teachers.

·       The strike provided the opportunity to educate the public on the way their children are being shortchanged by the Los Angeles Unified School District, and our schools drained of funds by the charter industry.

·       Many LAUSD school administrators were won over to the teachers and the teachers’ union’s demands, and were unenthused—to say the least—about the current LAUSD leadership.

·       Much of the media has been sympathetic, even if they were not originally sympathetic to us.

·       LAUSD Superintendent Austin Beutner’s plan to break up LAUSD into 32 separate entities and charterize it—while not part of these contract negotiations—has suffered a serious blow. Maybe even Beutner himself is seeing his thinking begin to evolve.

·       We showed our strength as we head next year into the next battle—the battle to preserve our healthcare. LAUSD tried (unsuccessfully) to cut it last year, and the austerity attempts will be back.

·       In waging a strike not for money for ourselves…

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