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No longer 'servants'

Dear Editor,

It is always in season to single out and to give praise to individual teachers. Just about everyone can cite the positive influence certain teachers have had on their lives, but the recent letters that give blanket praise to teachers and our public education system rings hollow in view of the present state of affairs.

The old concept of civil servants performing public service has been supplanted by angry demands and the brazen image of a clenched fist. It is coincidentally convenient and telling, that the old communist clenched fist symbol happens to be shaped like the state of Wisconsin.

Both versions were prominently on display at the Madison and Hudson demonstrations. Many of those waving the clenched fists hold membership in the National Education Association (NEA) and the Wisconsin Education Association Council (WEAC). For decades, the NEA and WEAC have had near total control of public education. They only are responsible for the decline in the quality of public education, not parents, not corporate profits, not global warming.

Our Constitution declares "No State shall... grant any Title of Nobility." Entitle is defined: "to grant a title." By birth, the nobility of Europe were entitled to special privileges and support from the public treasury, regardless of the value of their service. A teacher with tenure is rightly entitled to many protections, but not without regard to the

quality of their service. Statistics reveal that for a tenured teacher in Wisconsin to be dismissed for poor performance is about as likely as it was for a king to be dethroned.

In other areas of public service where some employees fail to perform, invariably their co-workers end up carrying their load. Obviously such an adaptation doesn't work in education. What would work is to dethrone the NEA and WEAC. Their reign of destruction must end, their rule is illegitimate. Only parents, districts and the state hold legitimate authority, which ultimately is entrusted to teachers.

The Hudson School District motto proclaims its agenda: "Learning -- the path to our global future." Learning is about individuals and their futures, not ushering in some politically correct pipe dream. A new agenda and motto would indicate progress in reform, a NEA- and WEAC-free system would assure its success.