RSI Corporate - Licensing

Memo to Teachers’ Unions: Now Might Be a Good Time to Start Panicking

Education Next – Joshua Dunn

“In “Collective Panic,” Martha Derthick and I argued that teachers’ unions dodged a major blow in Harris v. Quinn (2014) but that they should hold off on popping the champagne. The court’s decision in Quinn indicated that a prized precedent, Abood v. Detroit Board of Education (1977), might soon be overturned. Under Abood, public sector unions could collect “agency fees” from nonmembers, but those funds could not be used for ideological or political purposes. The logic of Abood was that unless public sector unions could collect those funds by compulsion, nonmembers would “free ride” on the collective bargaining efforts of the unions. Some have always questioned this logic. It’s not free riding if you never wanted the ride. It’s more like being clubbed in the head, tied up, and thrown in the trunk. Regardless, without the ability to punish these potential free riders, union membership would collapse. As Daniel DiSalvo has noted, “In nearly every state that permits agency fees, more than 90 percent of teachers belong to unions. In states that don’t allow agency fees, only 68 percent of teachers are unionized.” Since agency fees cost nearly as much as a full union membership, individuals see little reason not to join the union. Losing Abood would be a “crippling blow” for public sector unions.”(more)

More Colorado Districts Saving Money with 4-Day School Weeks

Education News – Julia Lawrence

“Since 2007, which marked the beginning of the recession in Colorado, the number of school districts that chose to adopt a four-day week to save money rose by 30%. Currently, 80 districts have switched to the new school calendar, a process that requires obtaining approval from the state.” (more)