"Too often, the women and men who teach our children are made the scapegoat for problems that start outside the classroom." - The Rev. Terrence Melvin, CBTU President, in remarks to the 44th CBTU International Convention, May 21, 2015.
"CBTU is also fighting alongside of our teachers and other school employees to protect and improve quality public education.
"We remain opposed to vouchers and taking money from public schools to expand charter schools.
"Too often, the women and men who teach our children are made the scapegoat for problems that start outside the classroom, or problems created by administrators driven by pay bonuses based on student test scores.
"When scores don't rise high enough or fast enough, teachers get attacked.
"Their job security is threatened.
"Contract concessions are demanded.
"Then their penchant for teaching gets strangled by excessive paperwork.
"We can not save our schools without respecting and rewarding our teachers and other school employees for their commitment, compassion and courage.
"As I say everywhere I go: I find it - it just blows my mind - that I don't care if you're a garbage collector, I don't care if you're a teacher, I don't care if you're a doctor, I don't care if you're a lawyer, I don't care if you're a street sweeper.
"Whatever you are, whatever you got in this life, a teacher helped you get there!
"And how in the hell can we turn our backs on the teaching profession because the 'far right' is standing up against them!
"We've got to stand strong and stand up for our children and let them know that they have a right to a quality public education by teachers who care about the students!"