International Federation of Free Teachers' Unions (IFFTU) Speech

Al Shanker shares with the International Federation of Free Teachers'' Unions the various challenges facing educators in the United States and the programs the AFT has established to try to face them. One challenge he mentions are the changing demographics in America. Another is federal funding for public schools and the various federal education laws to which public schools must adhere. In order to deal with these issues, the AFT has partnered with other labor unions through the AFL-CIO to increase its political leverage and with other community groups that share common goals and interests. Additionally, the AFT advocated that early childhood education, vocational retraining, and adult education be administered through the public school system. Further, AFT tried to promote the positive and successful aspects of public education to change its negative perception. The union also tried to foster personal relationships between parents and the teachers and schools and to promote high standards throughout the country. Finally, Shanker applauds the international discussion and organizational activity through groups like the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and its Trade Union Advisory Committee (TUAC).

Toronto, Ontario
10 pages
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