PFT Fails Teachers

Jerry Jordan and the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers are standing in the way of tens of millions of dollars going back into Philadelphia classrooms. Their selfish agenda fails children, fails teachers, and fails the poor. Jerry Jordan and the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers fail us all. They fail us when they put personal political scores ahead of what's best for children, teachers and the poor.

PFT fails teachers by extorting mandatory dues from their paychecks and using the money on politics.

  • Philadelphia teachers are forced to pay union dues or fair share fees—with average annual dues of more than $800—to the PFT and its state and national affiliates just to keep their jobs.
  • PFT union dues are being spent on political ads at the rate of $70,000 per minute. PFT ran two 30-second TV ads during an Eagles football game attacking Governor Corbett and select lawmakers. The cost of those two ads alone were $35,000 each, according to records filed with the FCC.
  • American Federation of Teachers (AFT)—the Washington D.C. based mothership of PFT—is set to spend more money on elections than ever before. This includes a recent gift of $500,000 from teachers’ dues to fund political attack ads via a “SuperPAC.”

PFT fails teachers by refusing to agree to health care concessions that would distribute an additional $54 million for classroom instruction this current school year.

PFT fails teachers by clinging to rigid seniority mandates that can result in the best teachers being fired.

  • When the School Reform Commission suspended seniority mandates to protect the most effective teachers from layoffs, PFT sued and went to court.
  • According to a recent Harvard University study, a single year in a classroom with a “grossly ineffective” teacher costs students $1.4 million in lifetime earnings per classroom.

PFT fails teachers by refusing to reward high performing educators with higher salaries. 

  • In the early 2000s, provisions for merit pay existed in Philadelphia. Then PFT withdrew their support for rewarding excellent teachers.