Central Ohio Teachers’ Union Agitates For Northeast Ohio Strike
The Central Ohio Education Association – an affiliate of the Ohio Education Association (OEA) representing public school teachers in central Ohio – has inserted itself into a contract fight in a northeastern Ohio school district. The Brecksville-Broadview Heights City School District has been engaged in heated negotiations with the local teachers’ union for several months, and Central OEA is now using its social media accounts to attack the Cleveland-area school board.
On July 12, “Join the Future” proclaimed via Twitter that “extremist tea party board members” were “pushing teachers to the brink,” linking to a Sun Star-Courier overview of the Brecksville-Broadview Heights contract fight. Join the Future is a “public education advocacy” group created by Central OEA to support the illusion that union rhetoric is not union rhetoric.
On July 18, Join the Future took the smear campaign a step further, posting an editorial cartoon to Facebook representing the Brecksville-Broadview Heights School Board as kidnappers,with teachers bound and gagged in the background.
The “extremist tea party board” slur against the district’s elected leadership seems to have originated with members of the local OEA affiliate, the Brecksville-Broadview Heights Education Association (BEA). On July 11 the union announced via Twitter, “due to unprecedented actions by the extremist majority currently in control of the Board of Education, the BEA regretfully announced that that it passed a strike authorization vote today with a 99.5 percent majority.”
Brecksville-Broadview Heights Superintendent Scot Prebles, who was not aware of Central OEA’s online attacks on the school board prior to an interview with Media Trackers, questioned whether Columbus public-sector union bosses have the best interests of Cleveland-area residents at heart.
“What any superintendent tries to do is work on issues at the local level, with the people we work among every day. The pressure from outside the district to come to a resolution — it serves their [Central OEA's] purpose, over serving the purpose of the local students.”