Key tips for helping education activists spot ALEC legislation « Education Votes

18 Jan

It’s no secret that the tentacles of the American Legislative Exchange Council ALEC stretch far and wide—poking into conservative-led state legislatures and becoming entwined with right-wing politicians willing to do the bidding of the rich and wealthy.

Those politicians who belong to ALEC are not going to tell you that they are promoting its agenda. That’s why, as a pro-public education activist, you may need some sort of guide to let you know when a proposal making the rounds in your state capitol is linked to ALEC.

In fact, today, Education Votes is giving you three tips that may help you spot education-related legislation that is ALEC-inspired or comes directly from its corporate-backed bill mill.Remember, ALEC legislation puts the interests of the nation’s richest 1 percent over working and middle-class families. Therefore, bills influenced or handwritten by ALEC are going to:

  • Promote the rich
  • Silence educator voices and/or
  • Dismantle public education

Promote the rich

Any legislation that promises deep tax cuts for huge corporations while draining badly needed funding away from students, public schools, and the retirement security of educators may be an ALEC bill. ALEC wants to defund government by eliminating taxes and shrinking public investments in the necessary avenues families can use to gain upward mobility, like public education. Without a quality public education, wealth remains concentrated in the hands of a few.

ALEC also wants to siphon money away from the retirement security of the teachers and education support professionals who have dedicated their lives to serving their communities. This will drive good educators out of the profession, decreasing students’ chances of getting the type of education they deserve.

Silence educator voices

ALEC also wants to weaken the voices of educators who fight for students to get the resources they need to succeed in and out of the classroom. ALEC wants to prohibit the voluntary deduction of union membership dues from union members’ paychecks. Without a strong union, educators have very few options they can use to stand up for students. You’ve seen these type battles play out in places like Wisconsin, Michigan, and Indiana.

Dismantle public education

From vouchers to parent trigger, bills promoting so-called education “reforms” or funding proposals that undermine public education and threaten every child’s access to quality community schools are more than likely ALEC-influenced legislation. For example, vouchers and tuition tax credits schemes rob public schools of badly needed dollars and, yet, fail to give students the education they deserve. Once again, a quality, public education is the best avenue working and middle class families can use to become upwardly mobile.

Now that you know what to look for, it’s time to join the fight against the coordinated effort to defund and dismantle public education. Click here to sign our petition and tell ALEC to stop cashing in on our kids, and stay tuned to Education Votes, where you can get the latest information about ALEC and what you can do to prevent its policies from impacting your community.

via Key tips for helping education activists spot ALEC legislation « Education Votes.


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