A Letter from NYSUT President Karen Magee

May 9, 2016
Dear NYSUT Member,
Imagine if you woke up this morning to learn that in the pre-dawn hours, politicians were pushing for legislation that threatened the very survival of public schools and unions in your state. That is the nightmare confronting our sisters and brothers in Detroit, and they urgently need our help.
Acting at 4 a.m. Thursday, Michigan House Republicans forced through bills that would impose severe anti-student, anti-teacher practices in Detroit public schools while cutting off resources and support. In contrast, the Michigan Senate has drafted compromise school legislation that — while not perfect — reflects the recommendations of the Detroit community.
Alarmingly, the Michigan Senate may instead take up the anti-student, anti-teacher bills at any minute. Our sisters and brothers in Michigan, supported by like-minded people in the greater community, are pulling out all the stops to derail this devastating attempt to privatize Detroit schools.
We can help make this a national movement in support of the students and educators in Detroit.
Here’s what you can do:
  1. Sign and share AFT’s petition urging Michigan Gov. Snyder to stick with the compromise bills supported by the community and Michigan educators.
  2. Turn up the heat on social media, using #ForDetroitKidsLoop in teacher and paraprofessional locals using the handles @PAR227 and @DFT231. Make your own sign supporting Detroit kids, educators, parents and schools. Share your sign in a selfie or group shot on Facebook and Twitter.
  3. Use and share NYSUT’s messages of support.
  4. For minute-by-minute updates, follow AFT President Randi Weingarten at @rweingarten and @AFTunion.
The Flint water crisis has rightly become a national issue. The failure to keep Detroit schools repaired and safe has become a national issue. Fighting for a fully funded and healthy Detroit public school system can be an urgent national issue, too — with our help.
Thank you — your swift action is essential now.
NYSUT President Karen Magee