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Monday, Oct 20, 2014

Common Core Supporter Says He Will 'Punch' Opponents 'In the Face' at Teachers Union Convention (Video)

  • (Photo: Screengrab/MORE Caucus/YouTube)
    Michael Mulgrew, president of the United Federation of Teachers, at the American Federation of Teachers convention, Los Angeles, California, July 14, 2014.
August 8, 2014|8:14 am

Passions flared during debate over a Common Core resolution at the American Federation of Teacher's convention, new video of the event shows.

Michael Mulgrew, president of the United Federation of Teachers, a New York City public school teachers union, joked that he would become violent against anyone who wants to get rid of the Common Core standards.

"If someone takes something from me I'm going to grab it right back out of their cold, twisted sick hands and say it is mine, and I am going to punch you in the face and push you in the dirt because this is the teachers! These are our tools and you sick people need to deal with us and the children we teach," he said as the audience cheered.

A video of Mulgrew's remarks, which occurred July 14 during AFT's convention in Los Angeles, was posted Thursday to Ed Notes Online, an education reform blog.

AFT members were a debating a resolution saying they would continue to support the Common Core standards, but also called for more teacher input in revising the standards. The resolution passed.

Some members wanted to vote on a resolution opposing the standards altogether, but the AFT Executive Council was successful in putting forth the more modest resolution, according to Education Week.

The video also show some equally passionate speeches by Common Core opponents. Pia Payne-Shannon, a teacher from Minneapolis, complained about teachers being left out of the process of developing the Common Core.

"No one has come up to this mic and said they are opposed to standards. No one has said that. That is putting words in people's mouths," she said to rousing applause. "What we are saying we are opposed to is corporate-backed standards when we were not invited to the table."

She also pointed out that the standards cannot be revised because they are copyrighted.

Watch the whole clip below:

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