At Santa Ana Unified School District’s (SAUSD’s) Reduction In Force (RIF) Hearing, third-year Santa Ana School teacher Pedro Reyes described the anxiety of the potential loss of his teaching job- one he has successfully served in for three years. “It doesn’t make sense.” he said, “Why are they laying off educators in the middle of a teacher shortage?”
In a show of support after Tuesday’s Layoff Hearing held at Santa Ana Villa High School, scores of teachers and classified staff rallied and marched at the site and on the district office in opposition SAUSD’s decision to cut personnel and increase class size in the sprawling district in central Orange County.
Santa Ana Educators Association (SAEA) President Barbara Pierson was pleased so many educators and others remained to join the rally after the hearing’s end. “We all know that cutting educators and support staff hurts children- and we refuse to be silent about it.”
California School Employees Association (CSEA) Local 41 President Eddie Luna, who also organized the event, encouraged their members to stay united. “We know by standing together we can protect our community.”
California Teachers Association (CTA) President Eric Heins and San Bernardino Teachers Association (SBTA) President Ashley Bettas-Alcalá participated in a ceremony this morning at North Park Elementary School honoring the lives of special education teacher Karen Smith and student Jonathan Martinez- both teacher and student were tragically slain on campus Monday morning.
SBTA leaders have worked tirelessly with the school and education community to ensure educators, students, and parents know that their pain is shared by many, and their well-being is paramount as they move through this time of emotional struggle. CTA President Eric Heins reminded attendees “CTA is a family, and when one hurts we all do. We stand with you in your grief and sadness.”
North Park Elementary educators have received a welcome outpouring of support from many sources, including local businesses who have provided food, hundreds of plush toys for students, banners, flowers, balloons- even candles for the nightly vigils.
SBTA President Ashley Bettas-Alcala reminded North Park Elementary teachers they will be in everyone’s thoughts in the weeks and months ahead. “As your union, I promise we will be there for you.”
Lax regulatory policies have led to exponential Charter school growth in California. Scores of scandals have resulted from the lack of accountability, with some operators settling with the state to return as much as 138 million dollars in just one case.
The ability enjoyed by for-profit charters includes the receipt of taxpayer money to finance the purchase of facilities and property and keep it all- even if the school ultimately closes.
Capital and Main delves into the abuses here.
San Diego teachers march to protest cuts to schools and programs
Scores of San Diego Education Association (SDEA) teachers rallied outside Madison High School to protest proposed cuts to schools that will limit students’ access to P.E., Art, and Music classes throughout the sprawling San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD).
Weeks ago, the SDUSD Board of Trustees voted to eliminate more than 1,400 jobs — of which 861 include teachers, counselors, school nurses, psychologists and other credentialed positions.
For teachers, the cuts are both personal and professional. Not only do they hurt some of their most vulnerable students, they are based on calculations the district is notorious for miscalculating. SDEA President Lindsey Burningham explained, “The District has always over projected their expenses and under projected their revenue.” She argues that with additional monies from the state in May and June, along with budget adjustments, the cuts are largely unnecessary.
As the process of Reduction In Force (RIF) is ongoing, SDEA will continue to raise opposition to unnecessary disruptions to local schools that eliminate opportunities for are most economically challenged students and neighborhoods.
WASHINGTON — The Senate Judiciary Committee today advanced the nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch, President Donald Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court. The National Education Association remains troubled by Judge Neil Gorsuch’s record on students with disabilities cases and his testimony about that record during the confirmation hearings.
The following statement can be attributed to NEA President Lily Eskelsen García:
“During questioning about his judicial record, Judge Neil Gorsuch repeatedly described his rulings as unanimous or based on precedent when they were not. Facts are facts, and we fact-checked his record. Judge Gorsuch has ruled against students with disabilities in eight out of 10 cases. In a rare case where Judge Gorsuch ruled for the student, he wrote separately that the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act does not provide services to help students succeed outside of the classroom.
“Judge Gorsuch’s record has wrongly limited the rights of students with disabilities, and all sitting justices on the Supreme Court agree. Just as Judge Gorsuch was testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee, the Supreme Court unanimously rejected his standard for an ‘appropriate education,’ which in his view is ‘merely’ more than no education at all. The bottom line is that Judge Gorsuch’s rulings have made it harder for students to get the services and learning environment that are most appropriate for them. Our students deserve better.
“The National Education Association will continue to urge our 3 million members to contact their senators to ask them to vote NO on Gorsuch’s nomination. We will continue to speak up and ask the very tough questions because our students deserve to know if their rights will be respected by someone who hopes to be a Supreme Court justice.”