Thousands of teachers in Arizona, Colorado to protest

PHOENIX (AP) — A wave of red-clad teachers will crash upon the Arizona state Capitol on Thursday for an unprecedented walkout that closed most of the state’s public school schools, part of an educator uprising that’s also bubbled up in Colorado.

Around 30,000 to 50,000 teachers and their supporters are expected to march through Phoenix to rally at the Arizona state Capitol to demand a 20 percent raise for teachers, about $1 billion to return school funding to pre-Great Recession levels and increased pay for support staff, among other things.  

Districts announced closures before Thursday, and those closing schools included the state’s largest – Phoenix, Mesa and Tucson. In Colorado, more than 10,000 teachers are expected to rally in Denver as part of a burgeoning teacher uprising. About half of the student population will have shuttered schools as a result, with teachers using personal leave time to take off.

The walkouts are the climax of an uprising that began weeks ago with the grass-roots #RedforEd movement that spread from West Virginia, Oklahoma and Kentucky. Colorado lawmakers from both parties have agreed to give schools their largest budget increase since the Great Recession. But teachers say that the state has a long way to go to make up for ground lost during the recession and before that due to the state’s strict tax and spending limits.

Since lawmakers don’t have the power to raise taxes without asking voters, they’re not expecting an immediate fix. The teachers’ union is backing a ballot initiative to raise taxes on people earning more than $150,000 a year and corporations.

Arizona Education Association president Joe Thomas said that Thursday’s march to the state Capitol is necessary after attempts at outreach have been ignored. There’s no end date for the walkout and he said educators may have to consider a ballot initiative for education funding if lawmakers do not come up with a plan on their own.

“How it ends is up to the governor and up to those legislative leaders,” Thomas said. “If they’re courageous, if they have the political capital to come down and speak with us, we all get a win.” Republican Gov. Doug Ducey has laid out a plan for a 20 percent teacher pay raise by 2020, but organizers of the so-called #RedforEd movement say his plan relies on rosy revenue projections and doesn’t address the other issues.

Districts around the state have said they will close as a result of the walkout. More than 840,000 Arizona students are expected to be out of school Thursday, according to an analysis from the Arizona Republic that tallied up at least 100 school districts and charter schools are closing. The state Department of Education said the state has more than 200 districts and more than 1.1 million school children.

7 thoughts on “Thousands of teachers in Arizona, Colorado to protest

  1. Well as long as they’re all dressing in red, they may as well sew the yellow hammer and sickle onto their clothes, too.

    Fire them all. The kids can’t read, think, or do arithmetic, but there’s plenty of time for communist indoctrination. Close the schools and send all the teachers to the nearest tent city for housing. It’ll be the best thing that’s happened to “education” in this country in decades.

  2. If anything they need a paycut.

    Overpriced snitches/baby sitters brainwashing our children.

    In the educational prison complex.

    Yeah…they call them schools.

    I drive by them and most of them look like detainment centers.

    All they need is the razor wire on the fences.

    These poor children get out of K-12 and they can’t even hit a nail into a board without smashing their feet.

    But they can pull up a video showing them how to use a hammer.


  3. First of all, these are not teachers. They are state controlled propaganda enforcers, acting as “change agents” for the agenda!. Most of them, as was shown years ago in California, are unable to pass the same proficiency exams given to their 10th grade students. It gets worse.

    The pay raises these marxist “educators” want will be extorted directly from PRIVATE PROPERTY OWNERS, who are exercising no taxable privilege. Did we forget about that? In my area union teachers average $70,000.00 a year and people are losing their homes over an illegal property tax used to pay them and their cronies.

    Additionally, Gov’t schools have done more to mentally cripple and harm children than any disease I’ve heard of. How else can you explain the fact that in 1820 90% of the population was literate and today only 60-70% of the population is literate? Too many illegal Immigrants? NO! This is clearly by design.

    The modern public fool system is not designed to educate, It never was. It is designed to indoctrinate.

    What will it take for people to see through this facade and sharade?

    1. “Additionally, Gov’t schools have done more to mentally cripple and harm children than any disease I’ve heard of.”

      This is where I have to disagree.

      Television ‘programming’ has done more to dumb the sheeple down and destroy all vestiges of critical thinking in this country than ANY other single factor.

      And yes, I would consider t.v. ‘programming’ addiction a disease… a mental one, anyway.

  4. So. The “walkout” is nothing more than greed? They don’t give a shit about the children. F ” em!!!

  5. Some good teachers out there but far and few in between anymore, my mother was a teacher and she could have really used a pay raise but instead got the boot. Why? She taught the bill of rights.

    If you want to improve public schools take them away from the fed and state, fire the entire administrative staff which takes up 99.98% of the funding and control the schools directly via parents.

    Should they get this pay raise here is what will happen:
    1. Admin gets 90% of it straight off the top
    2. 8% lost in the runaround.
    3. 1.9% to idiocy like buying a school bus with wifi and satellite TV (They did that in my county, how that works I will never know but they paid out for it.)
    4. Whatever is left might actually go to the teachers but only after deductions. Hooray for the $1 raise.

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