Public Schools: Pursuit of Power

In New York and Detroit last week, teacher strikes all but paralyzed the cities' public school systems. In Baltimore and parts of Florida, classes opened only after teachers had won gains in salary or working conditions in hotly contested contract disputes. Feeding the new mood of teacher militancy is the rivalry between the 1,000,000-member National Educational Association and the A.F.L.-C.I.O.'s American Federation of Teachers (membership: 142,000), which have long vied for the allegiance of the nation's teachers. Last week the two organizations seemed to be in a muscular contest to show who could be tougher in talking—or not talking—with...

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