John Matthews has run Madison’s teachers union for 40 years. Is it time for a change?

Jason Shephard:

But while Matthews laments the failures of government to improve teaching and learning, he glosses over his own pivotal role in local educational leadership. That role includes standing in the way of programs like 4-year-old kindergarten that could help the district meet its educational objectives.
Beginning in the next few weeks, a school board made up mostly of rookies will begin to address the challenges ahead. A new superintendent starting July 1 — Daniel Nerad, formerly top dog in Green Bay — inspires hope of new solutions to nagging problems. But the third pillar of power is John Matthews. He’s been around the longest and arguably knows the most.
Already, Matthews has cemented his legacy from building a strong, tough union. But now, some are wondering if Matthews will also leave behind a legacy of obstructing key educational change.

Clusty Search: John Matthews.

One thought on “John Matthews has run Madison’s teachers union for 40 years. Is it time for a change?”

  1. Franklin Delano Roosevelt was a very popular president, yet it was as a result of his repeated terms of office that a law was passed wherein a president of the United States can only be in office for 2 consecutive terms.
    It seems to me that this policy would serve well for others who are positions of power that effect the public. It prevents dictatorship, development of “machines” of corrupt infrastracture, and stagnation or limitation of ideas.
    Forty years is an awfully long time. Please give someone else a chance.
    On a separate note, I am concerned that the union head and superintendent have been breakfast and lunching so frequently as to become good buddies. The relationship of schools and teachers unions in this country has traditionally been adversarial which provides for checks and balances. If both are on the side of MTI, who is looking out primarily for the kids? And why should MTI be allowed to pump so much money into their yes-men (or women) BOE candidates so that they have a say on the school board, whose focus should be on the kids.
    Lastly, I am concerned as to whether MTI still represents the voice of the majority of the teachers.

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