People, Politics & Business

Scoundrels, Educrats, Rogues and Champions

Joe Scarborough: "Is The President Strong Enough" To Take On Teacher Unions?

CJ Westerberg, March 16, 2010 12:53 PM


Video Clip from "Morning Joe" Below
Scarborough Presses Arne Duncan Hard
About Central Falls,
Teacher Unions
 The $700 Million Turned Down In NY
Obama's Toughness &

by S.M.

Joe Scarborough, co-host of "Morning Joe" with Mika Brzezinski railed against the teacher unions, calling it a "monopoly",  and challenged Arne Duncan, Sec'y of Ed, on whether President Obama is tough enough to stand up against union demands for the "revolutionary" change needed in education.

See today's related Obama speech story here related to Central Falls High School firings in Rhode Island and previous Central Falls coverage here.

Joe was in one of his feistier moods  -"stand up to teacher unions who view teaching as a job, not a mission" - as he challenged Duncan on unions (ie. turning down money in NYC and choice in DC) with Mika joining Joe in comparing failing schools --the drop-out factories -- to the successful formula Harlem Village Academies' model --aka "Schools Designed For Teachers" --in poor urban areas -story and video link here previously covered by The Daily Riff. 

Duncan called for the next generation of "the hardest working" and "most committed" young people to come into teaching - with a million baby-boomer teachers retiring in the next few 4,5,6 years.  The extra incentive?

There is a new initiative for teachers: after 10 years of their public service, any college loan debt will be wiped off the books.

A surprise came when left-leaning Joan Walsh of Salon agreed with right-leaning Joe on merit pay and firings.  Even Joe was taken aback, view video:

(ed note: quote from Scarborough read originally as view teachers, not teachers unions, which has been corrected.)

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  • CJ Westerberg

    Joe really gets into education - he's not just going through the motions like a lot of reports. Wasn't he on one of big education committees when he was in Congress?

    The Harlem Village Academies is pro-teacher and pro-student - what a concept!

  • SMW

    Joe Scarborough seems to be one of the few folks in the media that is asking the tough questions and moving it forward. Someone has to. Go for it Joe....

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