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Teacher Strike!Public Education and the Making of a New American Political Order$
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Jon Shelton

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780252040870

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252040870.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM ILLINOIS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Illinois University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ISO for personal use.date: 14 April 2021

The “Fed-up Taxpayer”

The “Fed-up Taxpayer”

St. Louis, Philadelphia, and the Eclipse of the Labor-Liberal Coalition

(p.160) Chapter 6 The “Fed-up Taxpayer”
Teacher Strike!

Jon Shelton

University of Illinois Press

This chapter chronicles the new reality faced by urban teacher unions after the emergence of austerity regimes in many American cities. It charts teacher strikes in St. Louis (1979) and Philadelphia (1980 and 1981). In each case, teacher unions faced staunch taxpayer resistance to salary increases, and in the case of Philadelphia, a mayor who dealt with massive budget deficits by reneging on a collectively-bargained contract. As importantly, in Philadelphia, opponents of the “unproductive” urban poor and unionized teachers began to imagine market reforms of the public education system. The chapter concludes by documenting the emergence of vouchers in order to understand the mounting challenge of neoliberalism to American public education.

Keywords:   St. Louis, Philadelphia, teacher union, teacher strike, taxpayer resistance, vouchers, neoliberalism, market reforms, public education

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