Summer is upon us, and parents, children and teachers are winding down from what has been an exhausting and fully operational school year—the first since the devastating pandemic. The long-lasting impact of COVID-19 has affected our students’ and families’ well-being and ignited the politics surrounding public schools. All signs point to the coming school year unfolding with the same sound and fury, and if extremist culture warriors have their way, being even more divisive and stressful.
In AFT President Randi Weingarten’s latest New York Times column, she describes what it is exactly that unions do. Though unions are the most popular they have been in decades, anti-union sentiment still thrives in red states and across the nation. “Several years ago, The Atlantic ran a story whose headline made even me, a labor leader, scratch my head: ‘Union Membership: Very Sexy,’” Weingarten writes in the column. “The gist was that higher wages, health benefits and job security—all associated with union membership—boost one’s chances of getting married. Belonging to a union doesn’t actually guarantee happily ever after, but it does help working people have a better life in the here and now.” Click through to read the full column.
AFT-Wisconsin has a long tradition of offering educational scholarships to support dependents of members in good standing who wish to pursue a secondary education. AFT-Wisconsin offers one $1,000 university scholarship and one $500 technical college scholarship.
This year, an additional $500 technical college scholarship is being offered in memory of Phil Neuenfeldt, past president of the Wisconsin State AFL-CIO who passed away in November 2018.
Ilee Smith, daughter of members Kyle and Kim Smith of the Superior Federation of Teachers, Local 202, was awarded the first annual AFT-W Kathy Monaghan Memorial Scholarship. Ilee plans to attend the College of Saint Scholastica to earn her undergraduate degree in a medical field before pursuing a Masters and possible Doctorate degree in a medical field. Ilee is currently a member of the United Food & Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW), Local 1189 at Ecumen Lakeshore. She has experienced the importance of unions firsthand in addition to all she has learned and experienced