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Varied Responses To McCain Speech

Eep"We are gratified that Senator McCain has endorsed the principles of the Education Equality Project, joining education, civil rights, and elected officials across America who are working together to bring meaningful reform to our nation's public schools," wrote New York City Schools Chancellor Joel I. Klein and Reverend Al Sharpton on Friday.  " Fixing our schools won't be easy and it will require strong national leadership—but nothing short of that will enable us to live up to our basic commitment to our children: to help them learn so they have a real shot at achieving the American dream. Education reform, like civil rights, is above partisan politics and must be embraced by all."

Not so fast, says incoming AFT president Randi Weingarten: “Sen. McCain clearly has his talking points down about education, but we’re still waiting to see any comprehensive plan...Sen. McCain’s naiveté about education reform is only as stunning as his hypocrisy. He takes a cheap shot by demonizing teachers, yet lauds the very education reforms that I collaborated on with his new best friends, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and School Chancellor Joel Klein.

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Wow. Is that a made up quote from Ms. Weingarten?! What is the source, please.

good question. here's the entire email i got from the AFT:

For Immediate Release

August 1, 2008


Contact:

Janet Bass

202/879-4554

jbass@aft.org

Statement by Randi Weingarten, President, American Federation of Teachers,
On Sen. McCain’s Comments on Education Reform to National Urban League


“Sen. McCain clearly has his talking points down about education, but we’re still waiting to see any comprehensive plan. This follows his more than a quarter-century in Congress without showing interest or initiating policy to help public education. Contrast this with the record of Sen. Obama, who has stood for strong education policies and shown a genuine interest in working with teachers to help reform education in constructive ways.

“Sen. McCain’s naiveté about education reform is only as stunning as his hypocrisy. He takes a cheap shot by demonizing teachers, yet lauds the very education reforms that I collaborated on with his new best friends, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and School Chancellor Joel Klein.

“As the new AFT president, I will continue to work with others on education reforms that are good for students and fair to teachers. But I will not shy away from criticizing anyone, including McCain, who would rather pick fights with—rather than support—those who work with children every day and who know what works in the classroom.”

###

The AFT represents more than 1.4 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.

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