Editor's Note: A strike at DPS? Go for it

Ingrid Jacques
The Detroit News

Steve Conn is worked up. While that's fairly common for the new president of the Detroit Federation of Teachers, he used the "s" word this week.

In response to news about Gov. Rick Snyder's likely recommendations for Detroit Public Schools, Conn said he'd do whatever was in his power to stand against those plans — including a strike.

The governor is getting ready to give the Legislature a to-do list that would include separating the financially troubled district into two parts: one that would exist to pay off the debt burden and another to focus on educating the district's remaining 47,000 students.

Strikes obviously aren't in the best interest of students, but if Conn takes his angst to that extreme, it could be a great opportunity for the district to clean house.

Since strikes by public school teachers are illegal under Michigan law, the district would have the ability to fire the teachers who go along with Conn. Plus, the Michigan Employment Relations Commission could levy fines on both the teachers and the union.

Plenty of teachers within the Detroit union don't support Conn's fiery ways — including in the union leadership — and likely won't go along with such actions. But for those who do, they may just strike themselves out of a job.