Hot off the press: Fordham’s new report, “How Strong are U.S. Teacher Unions? A State-by-State Comparison.” The report examines 37 variables over five realms. Here’s New Jersey’s profile. NJEA is rated 7th strongest in the country overall, first in “resources and membership,” and 2nd in “perceived influence.” Here’s the discussion of the latter:
New Jersey’s teacher unions rank behind only California’s in their reputation for influence in state education policy. Indeed, stakeholders unanimously rate them as the most important shapers of such policy. They also agree that the unions are effective in protecting dollars for education (even in times of cutbacks), and strongly agree that they are effective in warding off policy proposals with which they disagree. Though they report that policies proposed by the governor during the latest legislative session were not at all in line with teacher union priorities, they counter that the session’s policy outcomes were mostly in line with union priorities—a likely example of the union’s power. Finally, they note, again unanimously, that teacher unions need not make concessions to ensure that their preferred policies are enacted.