National education and labor news

October 4, 2018

McDonald’s workers strike against sexual harassment

As the #MeToo movement gathers momentum, workers at McDonald’s deployed a potent tool from the labor movement to combat sexual harassment: a strike.

57 Detroit schools’ water tainted with lead, copper

The drinking water at 57 Detroit schools has tested positive for high levels of lead and copper. This means more than half of the 106 schools in Michigan’s largest school district have water unsafe for consumption. T

Budget $$ for teacher pay sparks Wash. state strikes

The provision by Washington state lawmakers of an additional $776 million in the state budget for teacher salaries sparked tense negotiations this summer between teachers’ unions and local school districts throughout the state. 

September 6, 2018

Judge blocks Trump’s anti-worker orders

In a victory for unions, a federal judge on Aug. 25 invalidated three executive orders from the Trump administration intended to make it easier to fire federal workers and weaken their union representation.

Betsy DeVos rolls back another student protection

U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos announced on Aug. 10 that the U.S. Department of Education will eliminate an Obama-era rule protecting students from for-profit post-secondary schools that load their students with debt without equipping them with the skills to find jobs where they can earn enough to pay it off.

Missouri voters block ‘right-to-work’ law

Voters in Missouri on Aug. 7 rejected a so-called “right-to-work” law by a 2-to-1 vote after labor unions in the state successfully organized to put the measure on the ballot as a referendum.

July 5, 2018

Judge halts school closures in Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico’s plan to close 265 public schools has hit a roadblock after a judge on June 11 ordered that the island stop the closure of at least nine schools.

Washington State court ends school funding case

The Washington Supreme Court ruled on June 7 that the state has at last complied with a court-ordered mandate to fully fund its education system by September of this year, ending a decade-long case known as the McCleary lawsuit.

DeVos’ school safety group won’t look at guns

U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos revealed on June 5 that her commission to study school safety, established in the wake of this year’s series of school shootings, will not study the issue of guns.

Trump cracks down on federal labor unions

President Donald Trump upended a generation of protections for federal employees, signing executive orders on May 29 making it easier to fire workers for poor performance, limiting the time employees can be paid for union work and directing federal agencies to negotiate tougher contracts with workers’ unions.

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