Saturday, May 08, 2021

Four out of 80

Years of organizing work to get to point where there would be four schools out of the 80 charters in New Orleans where the staff are unionized. That is, if BAE is successful. 

The vote is set for May 28, according to the release issued by United Teachers of New Orleans, a citywide union and local affiliate of the American Federation of Teachers that has helped the charter school educators organize.

Bricolage Academy Educators, collectively known as BAE-United, spent weeks petitioning the school's governing charter board to voluntarily recognize their union. 

Bricolage organizers have said 80% of eligible teachers and staff signed a petition in favor of organizing, and they submitted the request to the school's board of directors in late February.

Eighty percent of the staff signed up in advance of the vote is a good sign. It's only in the last few years that teachers have gained something like momentum in the long effort to overcome structural barriers to organizing imposed by the depowering and isolating nature of the charter arrangements. When New Orleans Public Schools made the big move to charters, it not only immediately fired 7,000 people, it set back the work of reclaiming power by at least a decade.  Four out of 80 would be better than three.  But there is so much left beyond that.

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