When Kayleigh McEnany, the former president of the American Federation of Teachers, was hired as president of K-12 education reform group The Alliance for Quality Education in September 2017, it was widely expected she would focus on charter schools, but she didn’t have any particular focus.
Instead, she said, she was focused on ensuring that schools across the country are “firmly anchored to the American dream.”
This was the approach she took as president when she was first elected in 2013, and it was an approach she repeated again as president during her second term.
McEnacys tenure as president began in January of 2019, and by that time she had led the AFL-CIO to record a record $5 billion in spending on schools and programs.
This included $2 billion for schools, $2.5 billion for community colleges, $1.5 million for vocational and technical schools, and $1 billion for the apprenticeship program, all of which have seen significant growth.
McEnacies first order of business in her new role was to create the AFLS, which is the organization she created to lead the movement for quality education in the United States.
Her first order was to appoint a new president, and she was looking for someone who could be a “fire and brimstone” type of leader.
In the months leading up to her hiring, McEnays allies in the AFLT, the union that represents teachers, had been in talks with unions across the U.S. to secure the rights of union members to collectively bargain, or bargain collectively collectively with the schools.
“The teachers are in a position where they can no longer be left in the lurch,” McEnnacy said.
“The schools have to be in a place where they are in charge.
We are going to make sure that the schools are in control of the curriculum, and that the teachers are being treated with the dignity they deserve.”
McEntacys new boss, Michael McEntacy, was also a leader of the AFLW, a union that has been fighting for higher pay for teachers.
In an effort to win more support for the teachers’ bargaining rights, McEntacs new hire, Robert Rucker, was appointed as President of the National Education Association (NEA), a union with 1.4 million members.
Rucker also had a significant amount of influence in the bargaining of for-profit colleges, which have faced scrutiny for their predatory business practices.
When the union went public with its first report in December, 2016, in which it called for the reinstatement of for profit schools and the right to unionize in order to improve student outcomes, McEnacy had a different perspective.
“This is a really big deal,” McEnticys first order came to mind when talking about the NEA’s importance.
“It was the beginning of a conversation that’s going on all over the country about what it means to be a good teacher, and to have the opportunity to make money and be able to pay for it.”
Rucker, however, has not been shy about saying that the fight for teachers rights has been won.
Ruckets initial goal as President was to make good on the AFLC, and McEnacs first order is to ensure that the NEAs agenda remains aligned with that of the teachers.
“We are going back to the union,” Rucker said.
To that end, the NEI has been working to push for a national agreement that would address teachers’ rights in all public schools, as well as the right of unionization for public school teachers.
In March 2018, Mcentacys predecessor as President, Michael Froman, said that a new national teachers’ union would be created by the end of 2019.
Since then, the two have worked to create a new framework that would allow teachers to unionized and to form their own school unions in a variety of states.
“In our fight to get teachers unionized, we know that we need to be able, by our union, to organize and to fight for those that we serve,” Mcentaclys first executive order states.
“For those of you who are not members of the union, we are going through a very difficult time right now, and we are doing our best to make it as painless and painless as possible for you.”
“Our goal is to build the union so that all the people that we represent can have a voice in their own education.”
“Our mission is to make the union stronger and more effective,” Ruckets second executive order also states.
The new President has said that her goal is “to have the union strong, and more effectively organized so that we can be the voice of teachers and all of the people who we represent in our communities.”
In May 2018, Ruckett and McEntays first in-person meeting was held