The Teacher’s Strike Wave Continues

teacher's strikeTeacher’s strikes seem to be the new wave flooding the nation. As of February 2019, there are several active walkouts.

As of now, the first strike of the year is over. A deal was reached by the union in Los Angeles on January 22, with the country’s second-largest school district that called for smaller classroom sizes and larger pay as well as more support for students.

This seems to be the beginning of a new rise, a teacher’s strike is likely to occur in Oakland, California and Denver, Colorado, according to reports.

In Virginia, teachers protested by marching to the state capitol demanding higher pay and more money for public schools on Monday, February 4, 2019. Colorado Governor Jared Polis stepped into the middle of the conflict between the Denver Classroom Teachers Association Union and the Denver Public Schools.

Police sent a letter acknowledging his intervention by Colorado Department of Labor and employment director Joe Barela. The governor has asked for members to meet with him from each party to discuss a path forward.

Teacher’s strikes across the country could go on for the second year in a row, with the demand for more resources per school as well as higher pay. Moreover, this may occur even in states that prohibit public employees to strike.

In 2018, a wave of teacher’s strikes started in West Virginia, known as the Red for Ed movement, because of the high number of the Republican States involved.

Caputo-Pearl said the first significant labor action was the Los Angeles teacher’s strike since the 2018 Supreme Court ruling Janus v. AFSCME Council 31 case. Labor leaders warned after that ruling the teacher union would move to recreate themselves.

A few thousand teachers in Oakland could begin a teacher’s strike as soon as next month due to working without a new contract. The school district and the union do not have a deal in sight as teachers continue to work off their contracts from 2017.teacher's strike

Oakland Education Association wants a 12 percent boost over three years, but the Oakland Unified School District only offered a 5 percent rate over the same time frame. More counselors, smaller class sizes, and more nurses in public schools is also apart of there demands.

Leaders said in The Indianapolis Star, that the monitoring of the legislative session must be completed before deciding what to do in this matter. Furthermore, Indiana ranks in the middle for class sizes and teachers’ salaries dropped more than 13 percent from inflation-adjusted wages over the last 15 years.

In Richmond, Virginia teachers were rallying after years of budget cuts they are calling to expand public education funding.

According to Virginia Educators United, all of the Investments could be approved by legislators that were called for by Governor Ralph Northam, and this will leave state spending-down by 7 percent from 2009 cost per student. Virginia will need to spend an additional $500 million in 2020 to offer the same as in 2009.

In Virginia, it is illegal for the public employees to strike, yet the same was so in some of the Republican-led states that teachers walked out of last year. A measure was introduced Democratic state legislator appealing the ban prohibiting public employee strikes.

A teacher’s strike in Chicago went took place as recent as Feb 5, of 2019, at four charter schools. Privately operated and publicly funded most charter schools are not unionized, and the teachers pay is often less than that of the traditional school district. Wrightwood Elementary School, Ellison High School, Northtown Academy High School, and ChicagoQuest High has banned together as one voice and decided to strike at four campuses.

This came into play after hours of failed negotiations on a contract agreement. Months of bargaining with Civitas Education Partners, Chicago Teachers Union dismissed the latest proposal calling it inadequate and so begun the picketing which at the writing of this article was still active.

These are just a few of the starting lineups for the 2019 teachers strike walkouts of the season, and there seem to be more brewing daily. The demands seem to all be mostly the same higher salaries and more funding which in all honesty appears to be a fair request and to get it a teacher’s strike appears to be the method that is working.

Written by Leon Murray
Edited by Cathy Milne-Ware

Sources:

Chicago Tribune: ‘No teachers, no school!’ striking Chicago charter educators say
The Washington Post: Where else teachers are primed to strike in 2019 — and why
The Intercept: COMING OFF LA STRIKE VICTORY, A NEW WAVE OF TEACHER PROTESTS TAKES HOLD

Featured and Top Image Courtesy of Eric Allix Rogers Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Inset Image Courtesy of Gexydaf Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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