Person

Larry Carter

Born:

1971

Nationality:

American

Occupation:

Union executive

Larry Carter Jr. is a vice president of the American Federation of Teachers union. He is also the president of the Louisiana Federation of Teachers and School Employees union, a statewide affiliate of the AFT.

United Teachers of New Orleans

Carter began his teaching career in 1993 at New Orleans’ Murray Henderson Elementary School, joining the United Teachers of New Orleans in his first year. After seven years, he took on a leadership role in the union as a staff representative, eventually becoming a member of the union’s executive council as its organizing director. [1]

In 2008, Carter was elected as president of the United Teachers of New Orleans, the largest local affiliate of the Louisiana Federation of Teachers and School Employees union. [2] Under his leadership, the union heavily ramped up its bargaining and recruitment efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Attempts to reintroduce the teachers’ unions were met with some criticism from school administrators, who accused unions of focusing too much on teachers and not the students themselves when they held overwhelming power prior to Katrina. [3]

Experts also pointed to statistics that showed that schools had vastly improved after teachers’ unions no longer held schools captive with strict regulations. The liberal New York Times editorial board praised New Orleans’ new schooling system, pointing out that “[Before Hurricane Katrina], less than a quarter of the children in a special district set up by the state to manage the lowest performing schools scored at or above the ’basic‘ level on state tests. Now [in 2011], nearly half do.” Further, in the same article, they pointed out that the teacher review organization that “opted out of collective bargaining agreements with teachers’ unions” successfully turned around and streamlined the school system. [4]

Carter oversaw the union’s unsuccessful attempts to sue the city of New Orleans for what UTNO claimed was a violation of their due process rights when 7,500 teachers were fired following Hurricane Katrina. [5] He also forged close ties with the local chapter of the NAACP, which has historically opposed Republican candidates. [6]

Louisiana Federation of Teachers and School Employees

In 2016, Carter was elected as president of the Louisiana Federation of Teachers and School Employees. [7] His election also made him a vice president of the American Federation of Teachers, the parent organization of his Louisiana union.

In 2018, Carter led a series of contentious Louisiana teacher negotiations, in which he threatened to have the teachers in his unions walk out unless Governor John Bel Edwards (D) approved a teacher pay raise. When questioned over what exactly that pay raise would be, Carter refused to answer. [8]

The LFT also releases yearly endorsements, in which, unlike other similar teachers’ unions, both Republican and Democratic candidates are endorsed for school board positions. For governor in 2019, however, the union supported Democratic incumbent John Bel Edwards. [9]

References

  1. About Us. (n.d.). Retrieved December 11, 2020, from http://la.aft.org/about-us ^
  2. Martin, M. (2015, April 21). What Can #NOLASCHOOLS Teach Us? Retrieved December 11, 2020, from https://www.npr.org/2015/04/21/400086082/what-can-nolaschools-teach-us ^
  3. Williams, J. (2013, January 29). Union eyes charters, seeks teacher contact info and offers training sessions. Retrieved December 11, 2020, from https://thelensnola.org/2013/01/29/union-eyes-charter-schools-seeks-teacher-contact-info-and-offers-training/ ^
  4. Lessons From New Orleans. (2011, October 15). Retrieved December 11, 2020, from https://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/16/opinion/sunday/lessons-from-new-orleans.html ^
  5. Dreilinger, D. (2015, May 19). U.S. Supreme Court denies teachers’ Katrina layoffs suit. Retrieved December 11, 2020, from https://www.nola.com/news/education/article_b529df75-7d0f-5783-aa13-7e9ef7cdb7aa.html ^
  6. Moran, T. (2016, June 01). Lacking contracts, New Orleans teachers use old-school tactics. Retrieved December 11, 2020, from https://www.facingsouth.org/2012/08/lacking-contracts-new-orleans-teachers-use-old-sch.html ^
  7. Sentell, W. (2016, August 08). After 13 years, Louisiana Federation of Teachers gets new leader in Larry Carter. Retrieved December 11, 2020, from https://www.theadvocate.com/baton_rouge/news/education/article_b6a9f9ae-5a7d-11e6-9f85-4fa3b2440303.html ^
  8. Jones, K., & Safi, K. (2011, September 12). Ecology and evolution of mammalian biodiversity. Retrieved December 05, 2020, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3138616/ ^
  9. Louisiana Teachers announce primary endorsements. (2019, October 08). Retrieved December 11, 2020, from https://www.postsouth.com/news/20191008/louisiana-teachers-announce-primary-endorsements ^
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