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Teachers Unions

Every education major is required to fully understand the workings of the Teacher's Union. Paper Masters can help education majors write research papers on Teacher's Unions. You can also use what you see here to get you started on your own research regarding unions for teachers.

Teachers unions are unions that fight for the rights of teachers. The main platforms that teacher’s unions fight for are:

  • Teacher salary
  • Working conditions
  • Tenure

In 1857, the National Education Association (NEA) was founded in Philadelphia. It was created by a group of about forty teachers. When the NEA was established its main goals were to work on improving teacher salaries, emancipated slave education, and child labor laws. Teachers UnionsForty years later, another teachers union was founded in Chicago. This union, The Chicago Teachers Federation, was also established to target increases in teacher wages. Most teachers at this point in history were given room and board as their primary form of compensation.

Teachers Unions Fought Discrimination

Discrimination became a major issue for teachers unions in the early 1900’s. In New York, the Interborough Association of Women Teachers Union was established to end the discrepancies in pay between teachers at the Elementary/Primary and Secondary levels as well as between white male teachers who were paid more than their female counterparts. In Chicago, several unions joined together to create the American Federation of Teachers. The union also tackled the issue of discrimination of female teachers and the strict rules they were expected to adhere to.

In 1902, the first teacher’s strike happened in Chicago. A teacher refused to allow a student back in her class after the child displayed unacceptable behavior. In general, strikes were rare because teachers were often fired for their participation.

Teacher Unions' Limited Power

Over the years, laws concerning collective bargaining have limited the power of the teachers unions. In order to gain more power, unions have aligned themselves with political figures and their campaigns. Public opinion differs strongly about the role of teachers unions in politics and their financial contributions. They continue to fight for the improvement of teacher compensation, evaluation systems, and improve working conditions for teachers.


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