AFT Is Now A Major Player In The Upcoming OPSB Races Campaign Finance Report Reveals $225,000 Contribution to PAC

It’s official. The American Federation of Teachers has become a major player in the upcoming races for the Orleans Parish School Board.

A recent filing with the Louisiana Board of Ethics reveals that the union has given a whopping $225,000 to Orleans Future PAC, a political action committee AFT launched in September to support candidates opposed to charter schools and the reforms New Orleans has undertaken in the years since Hurricane Katrina.

As reported previously, Orleans Future PAC is headed by former Jefferson Federation of Teachers president Meladie Munch, although the PAC’s filings are prepared by an out-of-state campaign finance consultant and its funds are held in an Montana bank.

Former JFT president Meladie Munch is the chair and treasurer of Orleans Future PAC.
Former JFT president Meladie Munch is the chair and treasurer of Orleans Future PAC.

Orleans Future PAC appears to be primarily focused on the District 6 OPSB race, which pits incumbent Woody Koppel against political newcomer, David Alvarez. Earlier this week, it was discovered that Orleans Future PAC was running ads on YouTube in support of Alvarez.

However, political insiders say that AFT’s recent sizable donation could mean that Orleans Future PAC is preparing to run television ads in support of Alvarez, which would significantly up-the-ante in what, up to now, has been a relatively low-key race.

In any case, AFT’s interest in the OPSB races show that the union is committed to undoing the reforms that have dramatically improved the city’s schools in recent years. Voters who want to see our schools continue on the path of improvement should support Woody Koppel on November 8th.

Written by Peter Cook

Pete became involved in education reform as a 2002 Teach For America corps member in New Orleans Public Schools and has worked in various capacities at Teach For America, KIPP, TNTP, and the Recovery School District. As a consultant, he developed teacher evaluation systems and served as a strategic advisor to school district leaders in Cleveland, Nashville, Chattanooga, and Jefferson Parish, Louisiana. He now writes about education policy and politics and lives in New Orleans.


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