Menlo Park Academy fights staff unionization with public dollars

Ohio Federation of Teachers (OFT) President Melissa Cropper joined the America’s Work Force Union Podcast to discuss union busting tactics being used by the Menlo Park Academy administration to prevent teachers and staff in northeast Ohio from joining the OFT.

Funded by taxpayer dollars, the anti-union campaign includes anti-union literature and legal challenges intended to delay the election. The Menlo Park Academy administration has challenged the OFT in court, arguing the union election should not fall under the National Labor Relations Board but actually the State Employee Relations Board, a move Cropper said was done simply as a delaying tactic. Forming a union is overwhelmingly popular among staff — 96 percent of eligible staff signed union authorization cards.

Cropper also talked about the crisis of violence in public schools brought on by the stress of the pandemic and teacher staffing shortages. Accessible mental health services are desperately needed, she said. Social Emotional Learning (SEL) is an education focus that provides mental health, dental and vision services at school to ensure student accessibility. The OFT has endorsed U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH) for U.S. Senate because he introduced the Social and Emotional Learning for Families Act.

Lastly, she spoke about a recent visit to Ohio by American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten, who promoted community learning centers that provide critical resources to students and families including health clinics, food, clothes, social services and internet access.

Listen to the entire episode to learn more about these topics:


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