Press Release

AFT, PFT Launch Extensive Ad Campaign in Philadelphia Exposing Mismanagement by School Reform Commission Chair and Governor

For Release: 

Monday, May 5, 2014


Kate Childs Graham
202/393-6354; cell 202/615-2424

PHILADELPHIA—The Philadelphia Federation of Teachers and the American Federation of Teachers launched a television, radio and online ad buy today in Philadelphia, exposing the mismanagement of the school district and demanding that Gov. Tom Corbett and School Reform Commission Chair Bill Green fully fund Philadelphia's schools.

"It's important for the public to understand that our children are losing teachers, counselors, school nurses, school secretaries, art, music, student programs and services," said PFT President Jerry Jordan, who is also an AFT vice president. "The root cause of the school budget cuts is the way public education is funded in Pennsylvania. Our state urgently needs a sustainable funding formula for education."

"The Philadelphia school crisis is one of the worst in the country," said AFT President Randi Weingarten. "But it is by design. Gov. Corbett has starved the schools and then demonized teachers and support staff, the very people who've been the glue during this bare-bones school year. Now, SRC Chair Bill Green is piling on and pushing the governor's failed education policies."

The ads feature Shannon Smith, a Philadelphia school nurse, and Antoinette Calimag, a science teacher at Bartram High School. In the ad, Calimag states, "We've seen doors kicked in, windows smashed, and a staff member was knocked out cold. We didn't have enough staff to handle it."

She continues, "Because of their reckless decisions, kids and staff members are getting hurt."

Radio Ad

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The AFT represents 1.7 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.