Washingtonians have come to expect illegal teachers’ strikes every year. Like clockwork, the Washington Education Association (WEA)—in conjunction with district locals—organize illegal strikes prior to the start of every school year. In fact, Washington State is “at proportionately greater risk of missing school due to a union walkout here than in any other state.”
Of course, the timing is no accident by the union bosses. It is meant to cause as much disruption and inconvenience to the lives of working families as possible.
We can’t be sure which school districts will strike this year. But, we do know that at least one is already preparing for an illegal strike.
The Northshore Education Association recently sent out a newsletter that outlines this year’s collective bargaining demands (bargaining meetings will go through May). Tellingly, the newsletter includes a call for volunteers to help “coordinate picket activities if we go on strike.”
The job entails “working with Picket Captains, constructing picket signs, determining picket locations, distributing materials, writing and distributing the picket line newsletter, and other communication.”
That’s quite a lot of preparation considering that meetings are currently ongoing. By every indication, rather than pursue negotiations in good faith, the Northshore Education Association — like so many other local teachers’ unions — is using the threat of illegal strikes to scare parents.
The illegal strikes—planned so far in advance—are more indication that teachers’ unions place their own interests first, not their students. Local teachers’ unions—along with the WEA—often portray illegal strikes as an effort to benefit the future of our children.
The reality is that illegal strikes are just efforts to benefit unions, at the expense of children.