Teachers: Back-to-School Blues

Unsoothed by a summer's vacation, the nation's restive schoolteachers last week faced the reopening of classes in a belligerent mood of complaint and protest. Last-minute compromises prevented strikes that would have shut down the school systems of Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, St. Louis and Toledo. Teachers did go on strike in East St. Louis, Ill., as well as in scattered school districts from Rhode Island to Utah, including 16 districts in Michigan.

Most of the disputes centered on better pay, but that was not the issue in the most serious situation of all: New York City. There, the militant, 55,000-member United Federation of...

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