Just How Unanimous Is Colorado Teacher Opposition to Senate Bill 191?

Deep down we know that our public school teachers are anything but a “one-size-fits-all” model. They’re human beings, right? And not only are some more effective at their jobs, but they also often have different experiences, philosophies and points of view.

As Mike Antonucci observed in pointing out an online Alexander Russo interview with Pennsylvania Teacher of the Year Michelle Switala, the most recognized successful teachers especially tend to have a maverick quality about them.

Locally we have an even better and timelier example, as CEA member teacher and fellow Ed News Colorado blogger Mark Sass takes union leaders to task for their disingenuous attacks on SB 191: Colorado’s teacher effectiveness bill. Among other things, Sass points out that he and a few other CEA member teachers testified in favor of the legislation.

Unlike in many other states, Colorado teachers can choose to join or not join a union or other professional organization. And many make their decisions to do so for a wide variety of reasons. The information on our Independent Teachers website is there to help them.

But it’s disappointing (and hardly surprising) to see CEA leaders sometimes act as if they’re speaking on behalf of all their members — or even worse, on behalf of all teachers. How widely supportive (and even more importantly, how well informed) CEA members and other teachers are of the union’s outspoken opposition to SB 191 remains a mystery.