Fox News commentator Tucker Carlson criticized the Howard County teachers union during his program Wednesday night.
As many districts across the country navigate reopening schools amid the coronavirus pandemic, Carlson said teachers unions are “corrupt” and used the Howard County Education Association as an example of unions “actively hurting” students.
“In Baltimore, one teachers union has decided that even responding to emails is just too much of a burden,” Carlson said about the union’s work-to-rule resolution, although the action doesn’t actually preclude teachers from responding to emails.
The union’s resolution, which was voted on last week and went into effect Monday, instructs its approximately 6,000 union members to only do what they are contractually obligated to do, meaning they won’t work before or after their official work day.
Union President Colleen Morris said last week the work-to-rule decision was made after her members felt disillusioned by the school system’s hybrid plan, which will begin rolling out March 1. The resolution is a culminating decision following the school board’s shift to approving a hybrid model and the district not ensuring all educators receive vaccines before returning to classrooms.
Carlson’s comments about Howard’s teachers union opened his segment about the Los Angeles teachers union, during which he had comedian Adam Carolla as his guest. Carolla, who lives in Los Angeles County and has 14-year-old twins, has been critical of the L.A. teachers union on Twitter.
Before Carolla’s interview, Carlson’s show played a segment from WBFF’s coverage of the work-to-rule resolution and included a video from Morris at a board meeting earlier this month.
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“Staff are finished sacrificing everything for an employer who has no respect for their lives or their work,” said Morris in the clip.
Morris deflected Carlson’s criticism when asked about the Wednesday segment.
“Our focus is on local conversations about the safety and needs of Howard County educators and students rather than conversations on cable TV shows by people who don’t know our schools, educators or communities,” Morris said.
Several Fox News hosts, including Carlson, have been critical of teachers unions during the pandemic.
“What happens to your kids, they could literally care less,” said Carlson.
“The teachers unions are just totally out of the closet, confirming everything we’ve suspected for years. They’re not teaching because they’re teachers; they’d rather be in Puerto Rico sipping margaritas,” Carlson added.
Carlson’s 8 p.m. show is the highest-rated cable news show in the country, drawing about 3 million to 4 million viewers a night.