Vergara vs. California, Students Matter, and the Hebrew Hammer: A Call to Saddle Up.

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Last Wednesday, I went to my box in the main office, as I prepared to leave for the day, and go get my comic books. Pretty vital. In my box, which i treat as a file for things that I don’t care about, there was a “while you were out” note from some lady that I had never heard of. I asked those around me useful questions like, “Do you have any idea who this is?” and “this sounds like it could be a tool…no clues? Anyone?”

Total fail on information.

Being far too curious for my own good, and acting on a hunch, I called the number. Given the time of day, the area code and the exchange, there was a large probability of the call being from a total tool.

When the number connected, I had a very brief conversation with a person representing “Students Matter.” Notice that this is a hot link, you should go back and click it. That way, you can get all of the information that I had my fancy phone read to me while I was driving, to be better informed for call number two, which was going to happen in half an hour.

Bottom line…the rep knew me from my involvement with E4E, regarding the Reed Case. There was a whole Adequacy storyline on that, and there’s a search box to your right, True Believers…so no flashback. Reed is being heard again, since the Union lies all the time…it was only kicked back for more due process. By no means is that a “win” for UTLA, regardless of what they say in their own paper.

I’m being snarky and off topic. I had a falling out with E4E for being kind of last minute about their brief, which I felt diluted its effectiveness, and also playing too soft. They wanted to play nice with a Union that was trampling the civil rights of my students in favor of a stronger labor contract, one that in fact protected teachers that were well past their “sell by” date. I, on the other hand, wanted to play hardball with the Union, and roll the dice, so to speak…putting student issues first.

Over my hardline views, I more or less parted company with E4E. Apparently so did the rep i spoke to, for similar reasons. She was involved with Students Matter because they were taking a more hard line, and directly attacking the Ed Code in the places where it permitted employment issues to go ahead of student rights to a good education, and good teachers. Things like the Last In First Out rule, which has nothing to do with teacher quality. Things like improved evaluations, and rethinking tenure.

Things I have been on board with for a long time.

They have a case going, Vergara vs. The State of California. Notice that…versus the state. Not the Union. Going after the organ grinder, not his monkey. The point is to strike down portions of the ed code as unconstitutional under the California Constitution, and free the system from employment and adult issues. CTA (California Teaching Association) and CFT (California Federation of Teachers)…basically UTLA’s corporate masters, just filed a motion to intervene as defendants. They were unopposed, but with the caveat that the case not be diverted from the issue at hand…that the ed code, as it stands, discriminates against students of various backgrounds, however unintentionally.

It’s a good case. Students Matter has some serious lawyers behind it. With CTA in the game, they wanted a hard line teacher, with viciously anti-Union views, who stood up for students and would gamble their career at the table…while still having good performance numbers. Lo and behold…they called me. With a court date in January, they wanted to know if I’d get involved.

Fight for my students? Against unfair ed codes, the State that employs me, and against a Union that constantly betrays me? You had me at “Fight for my students.”

We are going to have to have a sit down, since not for profits have played me before. However, I’m already gearing up an Alliance of teachers who have an opinion about this, drawn from the heavy hitters that I know and roll with. I’m assuming that the sit down meeting will go well, and there will be a significant new plotline next year.

That’s why she needs to go get the Hebrew Hammer.

It’s a solid case. Click the link, and contact the nice people there, so you can find out how to help. Anyone can help…not just teachers.

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