American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten is criticizing those who vilify teachers in the name of education reform, saying they have "hijacked" the national debate. At the start of the union's national conference Monday, Weingarten instead called for teachers and communities to have a more active role in improving schools. "A new reality is what we're fighting for," she said. "One in which we improve the profession of teaching for teachers and outcomes for students." Weingarten, in speaking with reporters, also condemned several recent cheating scandals involving teachers and state tests, but said it is a result of intense pressure to raise scores.
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