PHILADELPHIA—American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten and Philadelphia Federation of Teachers President Jerry Jordan issued the following statement on the death of PFT founding member and former President Marvin Schuman at age 94.
Schuman, a mathematics teacher at Frankford High School in Philadelphia, was elected in 1983 to succeed John Murray as president of the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers.
Schuman served as PFT president for seven years. Before that, he served on the union's executive board from 1960 to 1981.
“Marv was a beloved soul. Today, activism is so often synonymous with anger and dissention, but Marv’s activism was marked by a strategic calm. He was thoughtful, deliberate and deeply kind. I will remember his wonderful spirit fondly, as well as his remarkable contributions to our union. The people he led adored him, and he will be dearly missed.”
"Marv was one of the founders of the PFT. He is credited as having ushered in the era of collective bargaining to the union. His loss is a major blow to our organization; and we stand on Marv's shoulders and will carry on in his memory and work diligently to fight for better schools for our children and better working conditions for our members.
“As someone who ascended to the position of president during turbulent times, he brought stability and peace to the organization. His spirit is with us as we continue to do this important work.
“Our hearts are with his wife, Irene, a fellow teacher, and his family during this difficult time.”