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ERIC Number: ED558003
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 124
Abstractor: ERIC
Democracy's Champion: Albert Shanker and the International Impact of the American Federation of Teachers
Chenoweth, Eric
Albert Shanker Institute
Albert Shanker (1928-1997) is known mainly for his successful struggle to obtain collective bargaining for teachers, his leadership of teacher unions, and his championship of education reform. Shanker built large and powerful city, state, and national unions of teachers and other public employees that still stand as models both for union democracy and worker representation. During his period of active leadership, the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) grew from a membership of 65,000 in 1960 to nearly one million teachers, school employees, professors, public employees, and other professionals in 1997. Drawing on his authority as a teacher union leader, Shanker also took a leading role in advocating for the reform and improvement of public education in the United States. He challenged the education establishment to adopt the innovative changes needed to improve schools, and his own members to accept radical changes to union contracts aimed at helping the children they served. Presidents, governors, legislators, school chancellors, and most anyone involved in education sought Shanker's advice and counsel. His ideas remain the basis for many education reform initiatives today. This report chronicles Al Shanker's contributions in the international arena, and documents his international endeavors to support democracy and workers' rights. Contains one appendix: "Where We Stand" by Albert Shanker: 1971-97 Columns on International and Democracy Themes."
Albert Shanker Institute. 555 New Jersey Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20001. Tel: 202-879-4401; Fax: 202-879-4403; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Historical Materials
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Albert Shanker Institute