Session 3: Saturday, June 2nd: 2:00 - 3:50pm
The wave of teachers’ strikes that began in West Virginia and spread to Oklahoma, Kentucky, Colorado and Arizona has proven to be an incredible demonstration of working-class power in the face of austerity and privatization. Education workers have shown a willingness to take risks and withhold their labor to demand better working conditions and treatment on the job. And the strikes have been led by the rank-and-file, which in some cases have been in tension with union leadership. But should these labor actions be considered “wildcat” strikes? How can they inform organizing by other rank-and-file teachers across the country? And what can the labor movement learn from such militant organizing in “right to work” states when the entire public sector is under threat by the Supreme Court's upcoming Janus decision? We will discuss these and more questions with labor experts and teacher organizers.