The study points to well-organized teachers’ unions as being the important defender of education spending. Since education is the biggest part of state’s budget, it’s the easiest place to cut during a recession. We’re not saying that these states have bad intentions, we’re saying that if advocacy from the group that’s directly impacted by those cuts is weakened, then they’re going to be quicker to cut them.”
The above is a quote by the main researcher in a recent study released from the University of Georgia which studies the impacts on education spending by states when there is a strong teacher union present.
The abstract is below.
“We find that states with laws prohibiting collective bargaining for teachers and states with lower union dues per teacher made substantially larger cuts to overall educational expenditures, even after controlling for time-invariant state characteristics, secular trends, and an extensive set of time-variant state-level covariates.”
North Carolina has laws that prohibit collective bargaining for teachers. And the NCGA has gone out of its way to try and make it harder for teachers to have their membership dues
The ban on collective bargaining rights was established in the Jim Crow-era. It literally is the last holdover as far as laws passed in that era are concerned. And NC is one of seven states that makes collective bargaining illegal.
Anyone who says that teachers wanting to unionize and having collective bargaining rights are just indications of teachers demanding more money in their pockets might need to read this study.
It’s really about protecting our state public school system – one whose funding has never really recovered from the Great Recession in a state that kept boasting of giant surpluses.
And it’s about protecting our schools from the lack of action by our government in this pandemic.