North Carolina’s most outspoken teachers’ association is organizing under a controversial banner ahead of its second march on Raleigh.
The N.C. Association of Educators has become well-known for loudly protesting the Republican majority in the General Assembly. Last year, the group organized a large-scale rally in downtown Raleigh, calling for better pay.
This year, the NCAE plans another rally. But as they begin organizing, the group has taken on a logo that has rattled some teachers — a Communist-associated clenched fist.
The new logo appears on the NCAE Facebook page and in communications with teachers.
Perhaps the N.C. Association of Educators does not have any history teachers in their midst. The clenched-fist emblem was first used by communist factions during the Spanish civil war, and later adopted in the Soviet Union.
The logo’s adoption is the latest sign that the NCAE’s opposition to the General Assembly is rooted in something deeper than education policy.
It is also no coincidence that the 2019 teachers’ rally is scheduled for May 1, also known as May Day. The date is widely recognized among communist and anarchist groups as International Workers’ Day.
Last year’s rally was held May 16.
This year’s May 1 rally also intentionally falls on a school day. Last year, so many teachers called in sick that many districts were forced to cancel classes. The NCAE hopes to achieve the same disruption in 2019.
N.C. Superintendent of Public Instruction Mark Johnson has asked teachers to choose a day to demonstrate that will not disrupt school. NCAE president Mark Jewell shrugged off the suggestion: “Time is of the essence so that we do not lose a generation of students with underfunded, starving, under-resourced public schools,” he said.
Cover image of a protest at the General Assembly by Gerry Dincher via Flickr (Creative Commons).