05: Teachers’ Rebellion, Strike Wave Edition

April 9, 2018

“West Virginia first, Oklahoma next.” That’s what teachers started chanting when they won their strike in West Virginia. Now the teachers’ rebellion really has spread like a wildfire, with the Oklahoma strike entering its second week and Kentucky and Arizona teachers talking action.

This episode is entirely about the teachers’ rebellion. Danny, Jen and Eric discuss some of the lessons of these strikes before bringing you a series of great interviews from the front lines. We bring you clips from an onsite interview with Oklahoma teacher Jessica Lightle.

Then we are joined by Eric Blanc, a journalist who has been covering the strike wave for Jacobin magazine. Eric has been on the ground in both West Virginia and Oklahoma and shares his analysis and insights with us. And finally, we talk to a teacher organizer and striker from West Virginia, Nicole McCormick. She is joined by Dana Blanchard, a veteran teacher who traveled to West Virginia to cover the strike for Socialist Worker.

There’s a lot packed in this episode and we’re pretty sure you’ll want to hear more. Here are some resources mentioned in the show as well as links for further reading:

Socialist Worker ran an article featuring the voices of Oklahoma teachers (http://bit.ly/OklahomaSW), including more from the interview we excerpted with Lightle. You can also go to SW to read extensive coverage of West Virginia, Kentucky and Oklahoma as well as more on why these strikes are spreading.

Eric Blanc has been covering the strikes for Jacobin and his most recent article is on Oklahoma’s turn to strike (http://bit.ly/OklahomaJacobin). You can also go to the full site at Jacobin for more coverage of the strikes.

We’re including a link to the full video of the solidarity rally held in New York City (http://bit.ly/SolidarityNYC) just after the victory of the strike in West Virginia. There was also a solidarity rally held in Seattle (http://bit.ly/SolidaritySeattle) a few weeks later, which featured Seattle educator Jesse Hagopian in conversation with Nicole McCormick (featured in this episode) and Oklahoma strike leader Larry Cagle.