While I have to applaud the sentiment, and even the vehemence with which teachers’ union leader Michael Mulgrew last month defended the Common Core State Standards at a national union gathering, threatening to “punch” teachers goes a shade too far.
Yup, two shockers there. First surprise: Mulgrew, who is president of New York City’s United Federation of Teachers, defended the Common Core.
Second surprise, he did it like this: “I’m going to punch you in the face and push you in the dirt because this is the teachers! These are our tools and you sick people need to deal with us and the children we teach.”
And this: “If someone takes something from me, I’m going to grab it right back out of their cold, twisted, sick hands and say, ‘It is mine! You do not take what is mine!’”
So, um, yeah.
No wonder some folks are against the Common Core. If I had to choose between common, rigorous standards for every student in the nation and getting punched in the face, I’m not sure what I would do.
What Mulgrew might have said to a room full of union-affiliated teachers, you know, when he was finished threatening physical violence, is that the standards offer more creative control to educators.
He might have said that every student deserves to have a great education, and that common standards are necessary to make that happen for every child, regardless of wealth or race.
He might have quoted his colleague, National Education Association President Dennis Van Roekel, who said, “The new standards are a game-changer for the students in our nation’s public school system.”
He might have said a lot of things. Mulgrew is right. The Common Core is about kids and teachers. It’s his delivery one might take issue with.