I have told the story before. It bears repeating every other year or two, even if no one wants to hear it. Mostly, the pro union people don’t like hearing it. However, it is an objective example of how unions encourage meritocracy.
My father was a carpenter. At fifty, he was on a major union job in California. A short time after he started, the union rep approached him and said, “You’re going to have to slow down. You’re making every else look bad.”
Well, of course, he made sure to drop his speed some. He wasn’t really in much of a hurry to begin with. It just was, at his age, he had experience and knowledge going for him. He was also in good shape. He could walk on his hands for a city block and he could run faster than most high school kids. Mostly, he was very experienced at driving nails. It was always one swing to set the nail and one swing to drive it home. Then it was on to the next. I have seen him do it.
With the new instruction, I guess it meant he had to take a breath or two between nails. I don’t know. He never told me that part of the story.
The problem is that every person who is a member of union really has two bosses, the supervisor and the union. In some cases, I’m not sure. Maybe they just answer to the union. It causes problems. It encourages meritocracy. When people work too well, when they do too good a job, someone is likely to take them aside and have a short but to the point talk with them. “Be careful. You are making the rest look bad.”
I have said all that to say this. There is plenty of blame to go around for poor results from the schools. Everyone deserves some of the blame, teachers, schools, administrations and certainly colleges. Even parents must accept some of the blame. Certainly, we need to step back and have another look at methods and techniques. However, I firmly believe that the bulk of the blame goes to the National Education Association, NEA. Though it is called an association, it is a union and likely one of the most powerful unions in the country.
As a union, it is even worse with the NEA. Not only do they encourage meritocracy with the teachers, but they also determine what the teachers teach, also known as the curriculum. I suspect they’d just as soon us not know that, but it’s true. There have been a few times they have let it slip. They have made public statements that back up my point.
You might think that what your child is taught comes down from the district, from the principal and from the state. I guess some of it does. However, not without the approval of the NEA. It is, my guess, the main reason they oppose private schools so much. They would have to relinquish their control. And make no mistake; the NEA is all about control. Education is the one thing farthest from their minds. They are a political organization and, as all unions, they have a solid allegiance with the Democrat party.
Are you looking around, trying to figure out why your child can’t read. You don’t have to look far. It’s the dems and the NEA.
Good teachers that excel are frowned on. It’s the meritocracy that finds advancement. Rid the country of the NEA and the schools will experience an overnight improvement of 15 to 20 percent. It would be a different world in which the teachers would be encouraged to teach at their best.
The meritocracy would be discouraged and, in some cased not tolerated. I am convinced at least 5%, maybe 10% of the teachers in our systems should not be permitted to teach. They should find some other kind of work, assuming they can.
Now. All we need do is find out some way to rid ourselves of the NEA. At least, we need laws to keep them out of the curriculum and methods. Let them represent the members, not the public. They in no way answer to the public, or as near as I can tell, anyone.