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General: What are your thoughts on President Obama's State of the Union address?

Comments: 119

I was on the edge of my seat listening and savoring every word of his inspirational speech. At the end I was filled with hope and admiration for his tireless efforts on behalf of the lower and middle classes. I appreciate his dedication to the idea that everyone deserves to have an opportunity to get a quality education, that we need to rebuild our infrastructure, that we need to reward entrepreneurs who build their businesses in the US and hire US workers. I support the decision to mandate that all children stay in school until they graduate or turn 18. Yes, we can.

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Karen Carothers
OEA
Oklahoma City, OK

Glad he said, "stop teaching to the test," but his idea of teacher incentive pay concerns me. Many districts may interpret it as pay for higher test scores. Sorry he didn't mention the FAST bill that would give local school districts money to build/repair facilities.

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Charlie Cooper
Baltimore, MD

I believe that government like any other institution is there to serve the public and not to create monopolies that are not effective or productive. But like any other institution, if they are not kept checked for efficiency, they will do as they please. Obama is trying to implement some good polocies to ensure the middle and working classes are treated with justice and equality. Every topic he touched upon during his speach is valid. Now, we need action. The republicans are tyrants who need to be replaced from office with individuals who are concerned for the well being of all our people in the nation. We are in a cross road for change

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Luis v
Chicago Heights, IL

Doofus in, Doofus out! Yes, NCLB was,is, and will be a disaster as long as it is law. Sadly, the exact same is true for our marxist-muslim occupier of the presidency! The United States can do better!!!

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Rollinson Ford
Dallas, TX

He is right in all aspects. Of course, that is exactly why the Republicans will block every last one of his suggestions. The spin began as soon as President Obama stepped out of the Congress.

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Gregory Donelson
DFT
Livonia, MI

I agree with much of what he said. However, he does not deliver the goods. He is an articulate speaker, but where is the evidence that his administration has worked or is working? It is a national disgrace that teachers suffer the brunt of all that ails America. Teachers are not paid as professionals even with most required to have a masters degree. The cities claim they cannot afford to pay more. I do not believe that we will see the problems of this country rectified for many years to come. How sad!

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Carol Messeri
UFT
Staten Island, NY

I think he was right on with everything he said. Now lets see if it happens. Hope so.

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mary yonkers
NYSUT
St. Petersburg, FL

I was pleased and validated to hear President Obama's SOTU address. He acknowledged many of the beliefs I have in this day of economic crisis. His outrage over teacher bashing and the limitations to teach to the test rallied me. He spoke of economic disparity and the wealthiest "2%" outsourcing jobs to other countries. Its time to get money out of politics and democracy back whre leaders are elected by the people not by corporations. Its time to end Citizens United and fight the Tea Party and the GOP who want to choke out middle class families. Union busting is unAmerican and must stop. Teachers are everyday heroes not enemies of the state.

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Marianne O'Connor
Nashua
Nashua, NH

Are you kidding? These comments by the President of the United States were NEGATIVE not positive. He wants to unilaterally get rid of "BAD" teachers. Tht is dangerous in the hands of Arne Duncan. I guess you think we are as stupid as the rest of the country. The President we voted for and who took 90million dollars of of our union money for his campaign has veiled praises for teachers but the power to override the Union. What ate you thinking?

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Paula Ramos
UFT. New York city
Red bank, NJ

Great Speech!, about time a President said what Americans think should be done with TAX LOOPHOLES and giving Tax incentives to companies here, that employ and stay here in USA! It rewards the right people not wall street or Washington insiders! All we have to do is do away with off shore TAX shelters, lobbing for profit and ending Corporations as people! GO GO OBAMA, this is the Obama I voted for and will vote for again! Can we figure out how to get him to run for a third term?

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John Schaefers
NASD
Mars, PA

I thought the presidents speech was euphoric and positive. I believe there was underlining politics; but, the message was clear, congress must put aside there political differences and work together as part of the same team, and get this country moving again, get people back to work, start worrying about this country instead of countries that only want for themselves, not allowing America to sell more of there products abroad. We need to put more import taxes on goods coming in. I liked the fact that he finally took a aggressive stand to make wall street accountable and will be devising a office that will monitor the banks.

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Bennett Molodow
Chicago Teachers Union
Glenview, IL

So happy to hear him support teachers and NOT SUPPORT teaching to the test! So, how do we get rid of the test? And, how do we get our State legislators on board with this? Florida--Stage 2 of Race to the Top.

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Susan Garcia
United Faculty of Miami Dade College
Miami, FL

I think by his speech it's pretty obvious that he is full of crap. It's TIME FOR a REAL Change! Vote for the best candidate and not for the party they belong too. The Unions need to stop selling out for example how you all help inspire the UMWA to vote for OBAMA. He's anti-coal and that is all that the state of WV has! This is why people become so anti-union. It's time to get it together. If the Democrats are so PRO-education tell me... what have you done for me lately?!? Absolutely Nothing!

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Amie Marchesani
Marion County
monongah, WV

I'm still a bit upset that he 1)is still supporting merit pay for the "best teachers", 2)is still supporting dependence on Arne Duncan and current practices to lead the charge in defining "best teachers" (ie student test scores I'm sure)and 3) is still touting charter schools. I want to see some reality or I'm staying home on election day!

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Sharon Marlow
Campbell County Fed #3847
Jellico, TN

Without getting into detail.I support most of what President Obama said.Unfortunately, I feel that has little to do with what will be accomplished during his presidency.I predict that he will win 2012 in a landslide and still the Republicans will not give an inch.

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Robert Hughes
SVFT
east hampton, CT

Empty campaign rhetoric wherein promises go unkept. He will also let Arne Duncan run amok destroying our public education system.

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Neal Madnick
Neal Madnick
Flushing, NY

Wonderful speech. America needed it ... so optimistic and straightforward. Fairness and decency. That's what I voted for. That's what makes America the top nation in the world. To hear it in a presidential speech again, along w/ "ACCOUNTABILITY" was wonderful. Let's hope our politicians can drop the crap and come together to make this country the best in the world. Regulating banks, Wall Street, taxing EVERYONE fairly (go Warren Buffet !), eliminating campaign contributions and lobbyists, pushing clean energy, putting top priority back on our kids, their teachers, and their education should do the trick :)

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Debi Kastner
PA&A
Farmington Hills, MI

I did not listen; Obama has caved too many times. I can't believe he will follow through with anything. This has been a disspointing 3 years and we are stuck. We need a stron liberal. He should stand up more for the working person.

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joy miller
AFT, Campbell Union School District
Campbell, CA

Great speech, it's time someone supported the teachers in this country. He filled me with hope that we will become the best we can be.

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elizabeth conlon
North Babylon
Ridge, NY

I thought it was the best we are going to get, but it was still so much of the same old political rhetoric.

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Marina Adams
New York, NY

I am so tired of hearing the republicans blaming him for getting nothing done when it is their negativity and refusal to pass helpful legislation that hasn't allowed to get items passed. I don't think he should hint at this. I think he has to explain this to the public. Most people aren't aware of what the republican party is doing. They need to be fully informed. The only goal the republicans have is to get Obama out of office. That is horrendous. The country suffers because of the republican party.

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Rita Levy
UFT, NYC
Princeton, NJ

While I was unable to watch President Obama's State of the Union speech, I have read a few excerpts of it. I wholeheartedly agree with the president in that we need to improve our educational system. I also agree with, and can appreciate, President Obama's points. However, I feel that he was somewhat contradictory in his comment: "We should not teach to the test...". Will he do away with the Race to the Top program? Does he envision changing public education to reflect more of a charter system? Will he appoint people who have actually taught in school, rather than out-of-touch bureaucrats? How can he make the public respect educators?

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Lisa Roberts
Costa Mesa, CA

I liked his speech very much. Now he needs to get VERY tough, in public , with the people in congress who continue to block progress, with no regard to the 99% they are hurting. It needs to be shouted each and every single day!

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STUART HOCHBERG
UFT
brooklyn, NY

I appreciated what President Obama said! I liked it when he said teachers matter. Without great teachers , the nation will not be successful. We need to put more money into our school budgets. We are constantly being told that we need to cut teachers to balance a budget, and yet our enrollment continues to climb. He gets "A High Five" from me! "Let's continue to Bring America Back!"

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Susie Hopkins
Hempstead, TX

I believe that President Obama has a clear understanding of education's most pressing problems. In his speech he alluded to the new Common Core standards which have been adopted by a majority of the 50 states. I am hopeful that these "national" standards will promote the critical thinking and problem solving skills so desperately needed by U.S. students. Good teachers, however, are crucial to the successful implementation of these new standards. Teachers must be given the time and support to understand the new standards and try new instructional strategies which will help students grow to meet them.

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Susan Jernigan
Belleville Federation of Teachers Local #434
Glen Carbon, IL

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