NEA too big for its britches - Richard Whitmire - Politico.com: "But if the NEA is the political boss of bosses, why did Barack Obama conclude recently that Montana hay-bale campaigning was far more urgent than flying to Washington to speak directly to 9,000 fired-up teachers endorsing him? And if the NEA is the all-powerful force Republicans project it to be — prompting Democratic candidates to genuflect before its agenda — why did Obama tweak those teachers (via satellite) with jabs favoring charter schools and performance pay? (The first drew cold silence; the latter, lusty boos.)
Times change. First, the NEA declined to endorse during the primary, and Obama won without it. More importantly, Obama and his advisers may be concluding that the leftward drift of the NEA has pushed it closer to political irrelevancy. Giving the cold shoulder to charter schools? Even four years ago you could get away with that, but high-performing charter schools in cities such as New York are giving meaning to the words “equal opportunity” for poor and minority students.
And the lusty boos for performance pay? American parents are willing to pay far more for a quality education, but only if that education comes with high-quality math and science teachers attracted and retained by free market salaries.
The true target of the union’s leftward movement is the President Bush"
Here is the beginning of my post. And here is the rest of it.