According to sources, Washington Education Association officials are rather upset over the lack of support shown my parents for their illegal labor strikes. Notably, few parents showed up to participate. That reality poses a problem for the WEA’s “it’s about the children” messaging strategy.
So, the WEA has decided to react to not getting what it wants, i.e. parents’ support, by making it look like it is getting what it wants. A new blog post on the WEA’s website is titled, “Parents, educators take I-1351 class-size funding protests to the state capitol.” It details how parents and educators worked together to lobby lawmakers in Olympia on I-1351, the so-called smaller class size initiative. Of course, between attacks on Republican senators and an assortment of absurd claims, no number is given of how many parents actually participated.
The WEA is also out with a new radio ad that features a “parent of a 5th grader” who speaks out against lawmakers’ failures (as defined by the WEA), including failing to lower class sizes for grades 4-12. The parent then claims to have joined 40,000 teachers across the state in a “one-day walked-out.”
Conveniently, the WEA fails to mention that the largest and oldest child advocacy group in the state– Washington State Parent Teacher Association (PTA) – opposes strikes and walk outs of any kind because of the negative impact on kids. A resolution for the Washington State PTA reads,
“Whereas, Washington State PTA also holds that a disruption to the educational system in the form
of work stoppages and strikes is detrimental to the best interests of the children and families
affected by those actions, and
“Whereas, Washington State PTA believes that a disruption to the educational system in the form of
work stoppages and/or strikes is often detrimental to the best interest of the children and families
affected by those actions. While acknowledging that more state resources must be
committed to the educational process in the State of Washington, including higher salaries for educational
“Resolved, that Washington State PTA will not support work stoppages and/or strikes which
interrupt or disrupt the educational day.”