MSNBC Host Joe Scarborough denounced Detroit teachers Monday for engaging in an unauthorized strike without considering ways that are less harmful to students.
Detroit teachers have engaged in a series of “sickouts” in order to go on an unofficial and potentially illegal strike. The teachers pretend to be sick to avoid some of the legal obstacles put in place to prevent unauthorized striking. Scarborough denounced the teachers for trying to fight education cuts at the expense of students. Monday’s latest sickout caused almost all city schools to close.
“This isn’t about educating children,” Scarborough said. “Nobody expects teachers to go to work for free, but at the same time, there is a better way to do it then punishing the children.”
Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder ignited the unrest when he authorized an emergency plan to address financial problems in the city. He has proposed splitting the school district in two pieces, with the new district being overseen by a state-appointed school board. Media Matters for America, a progressive watchdog group, notes Scarborough isn’t looking at the bigger picture.
“The Morning Joe hosts failed to mention that the new funding cuts would also mean summer school and extended special education programs would be canceled, and Scarborough parroted a disputed quote from a union leader,” Media Matters noted. “The attack was the latest in a long history of some media outlets criticizing teachers unions.”
Teachers opposing the plan blame the state for the budget problems. Detroit Federation of Teachers hasn’t openly endorsed the striking despite being the official union for many city teachers. Since the teachers are officially calling in sick, they can’t be fired or punished for skipping work.
MSNBC, the Detroit Public Schools and the union did not respond to requests for comment by The Daily Caller News Foundation.
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