This area of the Reuther's Web site currently encompasses approximately 300, fully transcribed, speeches delivered between 1965 and 1996 by American Federation of Teachers (AFT) President's Charlie Cogen, David Selden and Albert Shanker. The speeches are organized chronologically by date. Please contact Dan Golodner for project details.
The interviewer, Ed Muzik, first asks Al Shanker to discuss his background. Shanker gives a brief biography and then goes into the organization of the AFT, citing the benefits of unionization to the teachers. In addition to concrete benefits such as wage increases and breaks from work, Shanker discusses the benefits of professionalization that unionizing gave teachers. Muzik then asks Shanker about the unionization of higher education professionals. Shanker challenges various concerns to organizing by higher education workers such as a feared loss of academic freedom. read more »
In light of a recent campaign for greater parent and community authority in school administration for a public school, I.S. 201, in Harlem, Al Shanker discusses the various attempts at school reform in New York City. He hits on the desire by I.S. 201 parents to select textbooks, to require a certain racial makeup in the school staff and administration, and the idea of handing over administration of schools to universities or community groups rather than the government. read more »
In this speech before the liberal party legislation conference, Cogen emphasisis that we must make a bold and revolutionary change to education in America. He references the Russian Sputnik and how America's education system does not measure up to those in other countries.
Cogen gives this speech at a graduation for younger students. He explains that education takes place everywhere, not just in the classroom and that students need to choose the ways of learning that are best for them.
In this speech at the 1962 AFT Convention, Cogen expresses this thanks for the support AFT showed the UFT during their collective bargaining campaign. He also express the need to create a new image for teachers.