It’s hard to say that fall is in the air on a 90 degree day, so instead we can point to Labor Day being around the corner as a traditional time for the labor bosses at the Washington Education Association (WEA) to step up their annual public relations campaign for more union dues by having a couple of districts threatening to strike.
This year the lucky parents are those in the Northshore (Kirkland- Bothell-Woodinville) and Evergreen (Vancouver) school districts, where strike votes are planned in the coming weeks. The Washington Policy Center (WPC) has the background:
“Children and families in the Northshore School District may soon be bracing for an illegal teachers strike. King 5 reports that teacher union executives in Northshore have scheduled a strike vote for August 31st, just days before schools are supposed to open. Union executives are also preparing for a strike vote in the Evergreen School District.”
Unfortunately for Washington State students and parents, this is not a unique activity. As the WPC report points out, “Washington state is plagued by teacher strikes, more than any other state in the country. Reports from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that a child attending a school in Washington state is more likely to have his or her education disrupted by a teacher strike than a child in any other state. In 2015, three of the twelve largest strikes in the nation were strikes called by teachers unions in Washington state.”
The list of strikes, raging from Seattle to Pasco, Bellingham to Tacoma, is a long one, even though courts have ruled that such strikes are illegal, every time they have been asked to rule. However, the strikes go forward, because school districts are usually hesitant to go to court quickly, and because teachers always get paid – eventually. Union bosses know that it just means a longer school year for kids and massive inconveniences for parents, but hey, do they pay union dues?