Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, said Monday that given the economic crisis, her union would be willing to discuss new approaches to issues like teacher tenure and merit pay.
“Faced with declining tax revenues, state and local governments are cutting” education budgets nationwide, Ms. Weingarten said in a speech to education policy makers in Washington.
“In the spirit of this extraordinary moment, and as a pledge of shared responsibility, I’ll take the first step,” she said. “With the exception of vouchers, which siphon scarce resources from public schools, no issue should be off the table, provided it is good for children and fair to teachers.”
It is unclear how much practical effect Ms. Weingarten’s speech will have on the stance her 1.4-million-member union and its locals take in negotiations with school districts or in lobbying state legislatures.