On Friday, Ohio's largest teachers' union, the Ohio Education Association, voted to expand its membership rolls to a new arena -- charter schools.
The Ohio Education Association has never been a fan of charter schools. OEA Vice President Bill Leibensperger says the union doesn't support charter schools as they currently operate in Ohio.
But the union has been losing members, about 6,000 in the past five years. That's about 5 percent of its total current membership.
And Leibensperger says charter school teachers represent tens of thousands of potential new members. Plus, he says, by bringing charter school teachers into the union, it may be possible to morph charters into the kind of schools the union can get behind.
"We don't support the way charter schools operate in the state of Ohio," he says. "We believe that by organizing and giving them a voice, that learning conditions will improve."
Leibensperger says the move to organize charter schools was a "teaching and learning" decision, not a "numbers" one.