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Arizona Teacher Walk Outs End In New Education Budget

After roughly a week of teachers walking out and demanding better funding for education, it looks as though classrooms will be back in working order soon. The governor of Arizona signed a bill that will increase the amount of money given to both teachers and schools in the first step of pay raises.

 

A massive movement was underway for about a week in the state of Arizona. Teachers wearing red and carrying signs reading #RedForEd walked out of their classrooms which led to the closure of many Arizona schools. These teachers wasted no time and headed straight for the capitol where the streets of Phoenix looked like a red sea in their push to urge lawmakers to add funding to their budgets after numerous years of fiscal cutbacks.

 

Governor Doug Ducey (R) signed legislation that at first did not meet all the demands that the teachers were requesting. While some teachers pushed to continue to keep schools closed until all demands were met, union leaders urged teachers to return to work and spend their time preparing for the same battle for the following year. A rep for the largest teachers union in the state, Arizona Education Association, noted that teachers weren’t thrilled with the legislation but they did see it as a starting point. It is also believed that the legislature is full of promises that won’t be upheld by the government. For their part, they noted that the teachers would have their eye on the November election. While the bill did not reduce classroom sizes, it gives teachers a 9 percent pay raise, halfway towards the goal of a 20 percent overall hike they requested. The legislation also doles out money to school districts and allows them the discretion to choose where it goes. It also raises the states spending on schools by an additional $200 million each year.

 

It is important to note that what has happened in Arizona is not a unique situation. Similar walk outs have occurred in Oklahoma, Kentucky and West Virginia. It was a planned event that followed the model of the West Virgina walk out which was successful in their negotiations. For more details and information, head to the Huffington Post.

Arizona Teachers Protest Against Pay

Fair societies and their respective governments have long allowed citizens, businesses, and other classes of people and groups have long banded together in the name of better rights, pay, liberties, and other benefits for themselves.

While some unions get more than a fair market value for their employees in terms of pay, far too many unions don’t get enough reeled in for their collective bases of constituents, with every union or group that teachers in the United States of America are associated with fitting the bill just as well as any other group.

Education is supposed to be highly important in the best societies around the world, right? While the strategies to help kids learn things are somewhat the same across planet Earth, the payment for teachers and public school administrators is far too low than what most reasonable people would think it would be.

Even though most educators in public school systems work towards master’s degrees in today’s age, they aren’t compensated as people holding the same degrees in other disciplines. All teachers, as a matter of fact, are required to have at least a bachelor’s degree here in the United States, with most states forcing teachers that want to retain their licensure to teach to undergo tens of hours’ worth of continuing education requirements – though they still aren’t paid nearly as well as they should be.

For this great reason, Teachers across the state of Arizona stood against the recent decline of a bill that would have risen the pay of teachers across the Southwestern United States state.

According to both the Arizona Education Association and Arizona Educators United, two separate groups, a statewide walkout is slated to take place on April 26. Doug Ducey could resolve the issue by giving teachers a collective raise of 20 percent by 2020, 9 percent of which comes next year.

Arizona Educators Plan Walkout

The public education industry in the United States has been one of the more controversial industries over the past decade. While most people would agree how important it is, there continues to be a shortfall of available capital to support it. This leads to lack of resources for the school and lower incomes for teachers. Because of this, many school districts across the country have had to deal with teacher strikes as teachers continue to fight for higher compensation and more resources.

While there have been many local strikes over the past few years, most have not expanded beyond individual districts. However, one state appears to be on the verge of a major strike that could put the entire system in jeopardy (https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/04/arizona-teachers-vote-statewide-strike-180420075924512.html). In the state of Arizona, teachers have voted to have the first-ever walkout that will take place on a statewide level. The vote was held about one week ago and was a joint effort between the Arizona Education Association and the Arizona Educators United organization.

Overall, more than 57,000 teachers and other educators showed up to vote on the issue. In total, more than 78% of voters ended up voting in favor of the walk out, which could be held within the next week. Overall, there are many demands that are being discussed that could have an impact on whether the schools will be closed in the near future.

Most of the demand has to do with resources to the school. One of the organizations is demanding that the funding levels are increased back to levels where they were about 10 years ago and that class sizes are capped at a more reasonable level. The union and teacher’s association is also demanding that they receive a 20% raise over the next few years, which will include a 9% raise in the next 12 months.

Arizona Educators Vote to Walk Out Next Week

Empowered by educators in other states, Arizona teachers voted on Thursday to walk out next week in an effort to pressure the state government to comply with requests for additional education funding. The walkout vote was a joint venture of the Arizona Educators United (AEU) grassroots group and the Arizona Education Association (AEA). AEU organizer and teacher Noah Karvelis said that the teachers will continue the walk-in demonstrations for the first three days of the week and then formally walk out on Thursday, April 26. This delay will give school administrators and families ample time to prepare a plan during the teachers’ absence.

AEA President Joe Thomas pointed to high polling numbers of educators proving this was a strong mandate for change. Although some schools voted against the walkout plans, an overwhelming 78 percent of the 57,000 educators that cast a vote did so in support of a walkout. Although some officials are hopeful that the state legislators will be able to work with the educators to provide necessary funding and avert a walkout, school districts are already putting plans in place to work around a strike. Some districts have already begun the process of notifying parents that the schools may be forced to close if there is not the necessary staff on site.

The decision to walk out came one week after Gov. Doug Ducey’s proposal to raise teacher salaries by 20 percent by the year 2020. Although some education advocates were supportive of the proposed legislation, other groups dismissed it for being shortsighted and not addressing the bigger picture of funding concerns.