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Free our teachers

02/25/2014 05:08PM, Published by ACL, Categories: Opinion

Letter to the Editor:

After reading Mr. Bullock’s letter regarding House Bill 1507 [Feb. 19 issue of the Chester County Press] I came away with the following understanding: In order for teachers' unions to exist, the state, through legislative action, must mandate teachers pay be garnished to provide funding to the union. Without this law, individual teachers would not pay their union dues.  

Essentially, Mr. Bullock states this law is a constitutional “right” which permits the state to extort funds from unwilling participants for the union. So the process is, the state seizes money from the teachers, who in turn gives it to the union, who then gives it to “their” politicians, who then insure the process continues.  

Mr. Bullock further stated being a member is a “benefit” to all.  As a taxpayer, I have not found any “benefits” from the union.  I come to this conclusion based on the following:

1.  My property taxes continue to rise to pay union benefits.

2.  My school district is not a top-10 school district in Pennsylvania, so where is the benefit? 

3.  Teachers who excel at educating are not compensated for excellence.  

4.  Good teachers get the same pay as incompetent educators, and we can’t fire teachers for being incompetent.

5.  If being a union member is a benefit, why must the union extort funds from the teachers?  

6.  I am unable to recall the last time the teachers' union offered to donate funding back to the district to help meet the district’s financial shortfalls 

My point being, our first step toward fixing education in Pennsylvania is to make the state a “Right to Work” state. If you wish to be a member of the union, then that should be your decision, not the state's. Let the unions compete in an open market place. If what they are selling is so great, then people will flock to them. 

An excellent example of workers deciding for themselves about the advantage of unions was clearly demonstrated when the UAW lost the vote in Tennessee at the Volkswagen plant. Second step, let the teachers teach -- for most teachers, this is their passion, so get rid of “Common Core” because it does not raise education levels. Fire teachers who can’t teach and reward those who can.  

House Bill 1507 will finally remove school districts from enforcing mandatory seizure laws, thereby making it a fair and open decision for teachers.

Jerry Iler


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