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    American Federation of Teachers (AFT) president Randi Weingarten, who leads the nation’s most powerful teachers’ union, has a message for fellow Jews: they should not criticize the unions, because they are part of America’s “ownership class.” Weingarten’s comment, which invoked a stereotype of wealthy Jews commonly viewed as antisemitic, came during a recent interview with the Jewish Telegraphic Agency. Reporter Laura E. Adkins commented: “I think some people are very skeptical of the power that they perceive teachers unions to have. They look at, for example, the ongoing struggles in Los Angeles, where they see this big dollar figure of aid being given for school reopening and are baffled by the perceived resistance of teachers to going back to work.” Weingarten responded: I have a very pointed response here for Jews making this argument. American Jews are now part of the ownership class. Jews were immigrants from somewhere else. And they needed the right to have public education. And they needed power to have enough income and wealth for their families that they could put their kids through college and their...
    American Federation of Teachers head Randi Weingarten, reportedly being considered for a Cabinet position by President-elect Joe Biden, apologized seven years ago for giving a speech found to contain plagiarism. Weingarten said that she herself did not write the speech on collective bargaining for public workers and New York City schools' $80 million computer system, but conceded to The New York Post that "the buck stops here." BIDEN EDUCATION SECRETARY FRONTRUNNERS HAVE BEEN CRITICAL OF CHARTER SCHOOLS, BACK TEACHER UNIONS “The speechwriter feels terrible," said Weingarten, "and I apologize." The address lifted information from NY1's series on the Achievement Reporting and Innovation System -- or "ARIS" -- which was replaced by the Education Department's "NYC Schools" website in 2015.  Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call) ARIS, built under the administration of former Mayor Michael Bloomberg, was used by only a handful of parents, The New York Times later noted. “It’s a good example where teachers were incredibly innovative, and I don’t want that to get lost,” Weingarten said at the time. "These facts came from their excellent...
    Randi Weingarten ripped Senate Republicans' latest slimmed down coronavirus legislation as a "bulimic" bill that will hurt public schools while giving tax breaks to the wealthy for private education. “I would call it a bulimic bill. I wouldn’t call it a skinny bell," the president of the American Federation of Teachers told Fox News in an interview Wednesday. "And the reason I would call it a bulimic bill is because it does a lot of harm. On the surface, it looks good, but like with bulimia, it's really harmful because of what it does in terms of education. I'm really disappointed.” SENATE GOP UNVEILS SLIMMED-DOWN CORONAVIRUS BILL, WITH MCCONNELL PUSHING FOR VOTE THIS WEEK Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell unveiled his latest narrow package on Tuesday that is expected to spend about $300 billion, down from the $1 trillion the GOP proposed in July, but couldn't pass. This bill includes an extra $300 per week in unemployment benefits through Dec. 27, a second round of Paycheck Protection Program funds to small businesses worth $258 billion, $105 billion for schools and colleges, and McConnell's liability protection plan that would limit lawsuits against businesses and schools from...
    Randi Weingarten, the president of the American Federation of Teachers, said there’s “no way” schools across the country could reopen this fall because of a lack of federal funding. “There’s no way that you’re going to have full-time schools for all the kids and all the teachers the way we used to have it,” Weingarten told John Catsimatidis on his AM 770 WABC radio show on Sunday. “Once we have a vaccine, I hope we can get back to that.” The School Superintendent Association estimated that it would cost an average of $1.8 million per school district to adhere to guidelines set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to reopen this fall. But, so far, the Trump administration hasn’t said whether additional funds would be available. “And in doing this, not only is there a [need] for retrofitting, for ventilation systems, but also for buying the damned masks for the cleaning equipment, for the nurses that we’re going to need. That’s why we’ve been pushing really hard … To get the [federal] money that states need… to re-open...
    WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW TODAY  > Another grim milestone: US surpasses 3 million confirmed cases of COVID-19  > Trump rips CDC, pushes schools to open in fall despite coronavirus risks after saying country is ‘in a good place’ in pandemic fight > White House begins formal process of withdrawing US from World Health Organization  > Six months into pandemic, US testing capacity is strained alongside new concerns over PPE shortages > 56 Florida hospitals report ICUs at capacity as virus surges > South Dakota governor, who flew with Trump, says she tested negative after coronavirus exposure > Harvard, MIT sue Trump administration over student visa policy amid pandemic  > Hard-hit Puerto Rico grapples with fifth dire emergency in three years  > Africa surpasses 500,000 confirmed coronavirus cases > AFT President Randi Weingarten says Trump administration plan to reopen schools is ‘a train wreck,’ adds Trump is either completely ignorant or completely callous and craven THE INTERVIEW Randi Weingarten, president, American Federation of Teachers AFT President Randi Weingarten says Trump administration cares more about safety in bars than for...
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