Parent trigger founder: Teachers unions launched “sweep and destroy” mission to deny parents

Two weeks ago, Gloria Romero, the former California state senator who wrote the original parent trigger law, wrote in this redefinED piece that the “status quo” killed the parent trigger bill in Florida. Today in this op-ed for the Los Angeles Times, Romero uses much tougher language – and singles out a specific foe - to describe the parent trigger battle in two California locales. Some excerpts:

In both Adelanto and Compton, parents trying to exercise their rights felt the full onslaught of a “sweep and destroy” mission launched by the California Teachers Assn. and its affiliates. What had taken weeks to build was destroyed in a few days of heavy-handed lobbying. Parents have reported being told outright lies about charter law and about their rights. Some parents reported that they were even threatened with deportation if they didn’t rescind their signatures …

A recent survey by California Common Cause revealed that the top lobbying force in the state in 2011 was the 300,000-plus membership of the California Teachers Assn. In other words, the massive teachers union is the top political force in the eighth-largest economy in the world. The union has made it clear that it wants to take the trigger out of the hands of mothers and fathers. Parents who attempt to lobby for their children now find themselves on a collision course with this powerful organization …

So what can we do to help parents actually see things clearly without biased interference? We need to direct attention to failing schools, so that parents understand the situation and understand that they are not alone. And when they send out cries for help, we should defend their right to occupy a political arena previously dominated by vested interests.

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