Aiming for Giants: Charter School Legislation and the Power of Teacher Unions

TitleAiming for Giants: Charter School Legislation and the Power of Teacher Unions
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsGiersch, Jason
JournalEducation and Urban Society
Volume46
Issue6
Pagination653 - 671
Date Published2014
Keywordscharter schools, educational policy, teacher unions, teachers
Abstract

Historically, strong teacher unions have been successful at gaining benefits and security for their members, but they have been put on the defensive by recent proposals for education reform. Charter schools are one such reform that could threaten unions, but there is wide variety in the content of state charter school laws. Using state-level data from 3 different years, I find that the stronger a state’s teacher union, the more antiunion provisions a state’s charter school law will contain. These results suggest that antiunion sentiment has reached a level high enough to overcome the unions’ ability to influence policy on this issue.