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Court verdict changes course for teacher unions; Caliph. Sue's Student Loan Collector



Read NPR's Weekly Summary of Education News.

Supreme Court Appeals Against Trade Unions

The Supreme Court ruled on Wednesday that public sector unions can no longer charge fees to non-members. The decision of 5-4 in Janus v. AFSCME will concern government employees, including teachers, and could have a major impact on the future of teachers' unions.

Public Sector Workers in 22 States Their unions still include compulsory union fees that support collective bargaining. But some non-members disagree with trade union policy. And while the unions were technically prohibited from using these fees for political activities, the court ruled that the charges still violated the First Amendment rights of these non-members.

Justice Samuel Alito said in the majority view that concerns about freedom of speech prevail over fears over freeloaders (the non-members who benefit from collective bargaining without paying union dues)

Researchers predict that teachers' unions will lose members and money without the possibility to charge these fees. They also say that the decision of Wednesday could pave the way for a stronger grassroots organization among teachers and other educators. Teachers in several countries rioted this spring protesting for more school funding and / or higher pay. They did this with and without union support. California Sues Principal Loan Service

The State of California suits Navient, a principal loan company, for "misconduct in the maintenance and accumulation of federal student loans."

Californian Attorney General Xavier Becerra announced at a press conference on Thursday that Navient had misled borrowers into repayment options and collection fees, and passed on inaccurate information to borrowers who had become disabled. The lawsuit was filed on Friday.

"Where the federal government dropped the ball to protect our hard-working students, California will pick it up," Becerra said Thursday.

Earlier this year, the Department of Education headed by Secretary Betsy DeVos issued a new policy stating that student borrowers such as Navient do not have to answer state regulators. They only have to comply with the laxer federal regulations in some cases.

Navient collects student loan payments on behalf of lenders and is one of the largest such companies in the US servicing loans to approximately 12 million borrowers

In a statement, Navient President and CEO Jack Remondi of California's lawsuit "is another attempt blame a single service provider for the failures of the higher education system and the federal student loan program to deliver the desired results. "

In 2017, the Consumer Protection Bureau also sued the company for more expensive plans due to mismanagement of loan payments and the guidance of borrowers. This case is still ongoing.

Justice Kennedy Leaves Record of Education Decisions – and Questions About the Future

Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his resignation from the US Supreme Court on Wednesday, leaving room for a new appointment and raising questions about future decisions, including those in the United States Education.

In 2010 Christian Legal Society v. Chr. Martinez voted Kennedy in accordance with the liberal majority in a case about free speech on campus. The court ruled that a public law school did not violate the First Amendment when it refused official recognition to a student group that had not admitted all students.

Kennedy also wrote Majority opinion in 2016 Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin which decided that colleges have the right to use race as a factor in the admissions.

The legal questions about approval action seemed to be settled by the court, but Kennedy's retirement could change that.

The same activist who supported the lawsuit against the University of Texas now leads students for just recordings, the group that sued Harvard University for the entry practices of that school. Fair-taking students claim that Harvard discriminates against Asian-American applicants.

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