Charter schools thrive on flexibility, innovation, collaboration, accountability, and dedication. Teacher labor unions have been vocal in their opposition to the charter school movement and deliberate in their efforts to alter this reform model. Although the ultimate decision about whether to join a professional association or a union is up to the individual teachers and employees, charter school administrators best serve their team by fostering a healthy, collaborative environment in which employees are treated as fellow professionals.
Leveling the Playing Field 2.0:
Abridged Guide for Charter School Administrators about Unionization
Click to download the entire guide in PDF form. The first page is pasted below.
Atlantic Legal Foundation (ALF) in recent years has published a series of state-specific guides entitled Leveling the Playing Field, designed to equip charter school teachers, administrators, and other employees on what they should know about unionization efforts at their charter schools.
This condensed guide highlights ALF’s tireless research and effort and can serve as a tool for charter school administrators and alert them to strategies that unions adopt to organize employees. In all cases, charter school administrators should retain the expertise of counsel to ensure their efforts to educate charter school employees are legal, coincide with an individual state’s laws regarding unionization, and do not conflict with the rights of union organizers or employees.
Today, charter schools are widely accepted quality alternatives to traditional public schools, but teachers’ unions at the local, state, and national levels have consistently opposed charter laws and policy. Despite this opposition, unions also continue aggressive efforts to organize charter school employees and establish new union outposts among charter schools.
The decision to join a union is that of the individual charter school teacher or employee, but many of the facts surrounding unionization efforts of charter schools are those which organized labor would not likely advertise as it attempts to bring scores of new union members—along with their union dues—into the fold. Ultimately, unionization efforts challenge the foundation of flexibility, innovation, and accountability inherent in charter schools.
Click here to read the entire guide (pdf): Leveling the Playing Field 2.0: Abridged Guide for Charter School Administrators about Unionization