Well, they are at it again.  The Detroit Public School system has to close 94 of their 97 schools because the Detroit teacher union has called for a sickout.

I thought calling for a teacher strike in Michigan is illegal? Let us see what our legislature will do about this, and if they will stand up for the law.

The Detroit News is reporting that on Sunday the 2,600 member Detroit Federation of Teachers union called for a union wide sickout.  This is different from the times there was a teacher wide sickout in the past year, this time the union has actually called for one.

The Detroit Federation of Teachers union Executive Vice President Terrence Martin was quoted in the article stating:

Although educators want nothing more than to be in classrooms helping our students learn and grow, the district has left us no choice.  We are calling for a universal sickout on Monday. While we recognize this puts Detroit’s parents community in a difficult situation, the district’s broken promises and gross negligence leaves us no choice.

Hmmm. “Although educators want nothing more than to be in classrooms helping our students learn and grow, the district has left us no choice”. Really?   If that’s the case, then try to work this out without using the “students” as their pawns.

The union is calling for a rally at 10 a.m. today in front of the district’s central administration offices Building “to demand fair treatment from the district.”

The DPS Emergency Manager Steven Rhodes was quoted in the article stating:

A districtwide sickout will be counterproductive and detrimental to the efforts of everyone working to help the district

The DPS has used all of the $48.7 million dollar emergency bailout they received, and there is no funds left to continue paying the teachers and operating the schools after June 30th.  This was known and expected when the school system received the emergency bailout funds.

The teacher union is concerned that teachers who had elected to spread their pay out over the course of the entire year, instead of the 9 months they are in session, will not receive the pay due them.  I understand their concern, and believe that they deserved to be paid for the time they were in the classroom and believe in the end they will be paid.

This illegal strike only harms one class of people, and that is the students and their parents.  The teachers will eventually be paid and back in the classroom, at least until the next time the teachers and their union use the kids as their pawns.

Let’s talk about this today on The Live with Renk Show which airs Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to noon.  To let me know your thoughts during the show please call (269) 441-9595.

Or please feel free to start a discussion and write your thoughts in the comment section.