AFT Profile picture
Aug 3 29 tweets 12 min read
HAPPENING NOW: @rweingarten talks to the @nysut conference of leaders. Follow along in the thread below.
.@rweingarten: After the 2016 election, several of us got together in Washington DC to see what we needed to do next. Rather than talking about politicians to voting, we now focus first on what the values are to lead people to vote.
.@rweingarten: It doesn't matter where you are or how you've voted in the past. What matters is, what are the values we're voting on? I know everyone in this room believes in well-resourced public education as an aspiration agent.
.@rweingarten: We need to make sure teachers to paras to bus drivers to have the conditions they need to help kids. But we believe in public ed as an anchor in this country. Another anchor in this country? Unions.
.@rweingarten: We've gone from a union movement that was stagnant, to seeing young people seeing the power of unions and organizing their workplaces. You can tell in the aftermath of Janus, most of our members believe that we can accomplish together what's impossible alone.
.@rweingarten: Most of our members believe in democracy, in freedom, in fighting discrimination. From that, there's a movement. And from that, there's opportunity and justice.
.@rweingarten: Conservatives are working consistently to undermine educators in this country. They're in the same race as we are between fear & hope, aspiration & despair, democracy & autocracy. And they're doing this because our members worked so hard during COVID.
.@rweingarten: What right wing extremists understand is what Americans understand: That public schools are foundational.
.@rweingarten: If folks like DeSantis & DeVos get their way, kids won't become critical thinkers and learn the lessons of life. Schools are a way of creating pluralism and diversity. That's why there's censorship of books and lessons, and calling educators "woke."
.@rweingarten: These extremists are fighting these culture wars, and the attacks are only going to get worse. It's a strategy to divide educators from parents, to create apathy and fear. These are the biggest tools they have to win.
.@rweingarten: Right wing extremists have said that the way to universal vouchers is to create universal distrust. But our members stuck with the union after Janus. And people around the country understand the importance of unions. That's why they're fighting these culture wars.
.@rweingarten: AFT and @NYSUT have already created an antidote. Just like we did in 2016, you turned to the values that unite us - what kids need most. Everyone's been through in the last 2 years. So if we can unite educators & parents, we can win.
.@rweingarten: What do parents want the most? They want their kids to learn & to be safe. That's why we started our #ReadingOpensTheWorld program - to increase literacy and get kids excited about learning by giving out 1M books - and focus on community schools.
.@rweingarten: We're facing a mental health crisis and food insecurity crisis in this country. Why can't we use the infrastructure of community schools to help tackle those challenges?
.@rweingarten: 93% of kids in CTE schools graduate, and 70% go to college. If we had more of these career tech ed schools, so students could see their future in front of them, think about what it would do for them and for our future.
.@rweingarten: Thinking about ways to meet the needs of our kids, rather than endless conversations about who is "woke," is what we're doing. That's what parents want. What we need is for educators to be respected and to have the conditions we need to teach.
.@rweingarten: I know we say it a lot, but elections matter more than ever. We have lawmakers running in states across the country, who are denying the results of the 2020 election, spouting the Big Lie.
.@rweingarten: We can't afford to stay home. You can lose at the ballot box what you win at the bargaining table. If we lose this election, Rick Scott already said conservatives want to sunset every law every 5 years. What do you think that means for Social Security? Medicare?
.@rweingarten: Apathy is the tool of the autocrat. These extremists don't think our members will vote for them. They're aiming for people to stay home. Everything that happens in Washington these days, and in other states, will eventually show up in our communities.
.@rweingarten: I know how exhausted you all are. But you continue this work because that's who you are. That's what this administration is trying to do: Help working families. This new #InflationReductionAct will help keep costs down, invest in the environment, lower drug prices.
.@rweingarten: We are still fighting to #CancelStudentDebt because we know how important this is. It's why we've partnered with @SaveWithSummer and filed lawsuits and worked with the administration to fix #PSLF. That's what union advocacy is: Never giving up. That's who we are.
.@rweingarten: We live in a post-truth society. That's why we're important. We are trusted messengers in our community, and we have to continue to build those relationships in our communities. It's up to us to strengthen democracy.
.@rweingarten on gun violence in schools: We're in the gun violence conversation for the same reason we fought for good ventilation & layered COVID mitigation factors in schools. It's to create safe, welcoming learning & working environments for all. (1/4)
.@rweingarten: About 80% of our members believe that educators & students shouldn't have guns in schools. Whether or not school security should be armed is up to the localities, and we've had conversations about school security with civil rights groups & members. (2/4)
.@rweingarten: We believe that weapons of war have no place in our communities. This isn't about the 2nd amendment and responsible gun ownership - this is about reasonable restrictions to keep folks safe. (3/4)
.@rweingarten: We also believe that gun manufacturers should be held responsible for the danger of their products. When aspirin caused injury, it was pulled from the shelves. Why are gun makers immune from this accountability? (4/4)
Wow! One of our @NYSUT members, because of AFT's advocacy, just had $142,600 forgiven in student debt because of the #PSLF.
.@rweingarten on division & discrimination: We can't be bystanders. We have to figure out how to meet people where they are & bring people to a different place. We need to name the behavior & say it's not appropriate, without shaming people.
.@rweingarten on LGBTQ+ issues: It's important that we reach out to folks feeling threatened and show our support. But people are being used as pawns in political battles, and we also need to mobilize, organize & elect lawmakers who will stand up for LGBTQ+ people.

• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with AFT

AFT Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

More from @AFTunion

Jun 2
HAPPENING NOW: @rweingarten talks to @ABCNewsLive about gun violence, educator stress, and more. Follow along in the thread below.
.@rweingarten: There are some great aspects of technology, like me joining you from Buffalo after visiting an amazing elementary school. We’re headed to a unity rally next. We must lift up the victims of this senseless tragedy and not forget #Buffalo.
.@rweingarten: We know as educators that there are ways to #EndGunViolenceNow. When other countries have had mass shootings, they made common sense changed to prevent them from happening - in the name of the students and teachers in a Uvalde, shoppers in Buffalo, and more.
Read 7 tweets
Jun 2
Good afternoon from Buffalo, NY, where we’re visiting with students and educators at Stanley M. Makowski Early Childhood Center. We’ll be joining the community later this evening in a unity rally demanding that lawmakers #EndGunViolenceNow. @nysut @BfloTeachersFed ImageImage
The Makowski school (School 99) teaches kids from K-4 and recently became a community school with resources and academy available on the weekends. @nysut ImageImage
Makowski also has an IB program, which is designed by the educators in the school to best suit their students’ needs. #FreedomToTeach @nysut Image
Read 5 tweets
May 31
Investing in electric school buses will help our students breathe easier. Building buses union will enable communities to thrive. We must do both.

Together with @UAW, we’re calling for a #cleantransition that includes electric school buses made with union labor.

Watch live ⤵️
@UAW This press conference shows you what is possible, what can be done. - @rweingarten #cleantransition Image
.@rweingarten: We need to ensure that students, educators and bus drivers are safe. #cleantransition
Read 10 tweets
May 2
@ABCNewsLive @rweingarten .@rweingarten: I wrote the op-ed for @TIME with @JonahEdelman to say "this has been our observations and that we need people of conscious to stand up and here's why."

Read the op-ed here:…
"Teachers want to teach and we need to meet the needs of our students." - @rweingarten
Read 6 tweets
May 1
Our youngest learners are negatively impacted by constant teacher and staff turnover due to the chronic public underfunding of early childhood education programs. #Childcare and #Prek educators deserve #WorthyWages! Today is #WorthyWageDay—retweet to show your support. Image
Since 1992, individuals, organizations and educators have come together around May 1st to fight for #worthywages for #ChildCare and #PreK educators. Why are we fighting for the same thing 30 years later? #SolveChildCare
#Childcare workers continue to be one of the lowest-paid occupations nationwide. #PreK teachers and #ChildCare and #PreK directors are also subject to low wages #WorthyWages #SolveChildCare… @CSCCEUCB
Read 4 tweets

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Don't want to be a Premium member but still want to support us?

Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal

Or Donate anonymously using crypto!


0xfe58350B80634f60Fa6Dc149a72b4DFbc17D341E copy


3ATGMxNzCUFzxpMCHL5sWSt4DVtS8UqXpi copy

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!