Local Teachers Put On A “Walk-In” To Generate Awareness For Their Cause

In an ongoing effort to increase awareness to their cause local San Tan Valley teachers, and teachers throughout the state, performed a “walk-in.” This form of protest took place before classes began as to avoid interrupting the educational process of students.

Teachers, parents, and kids took part to support the effort to increase the wages of Arizona Teachers. This has been an ongoing battle between the state and teachers.

The “walk-in” is to provide a positive message and an alternative to a walk-out. The teachers hope that the walk-in allows them to have a healthy conversation with parents and to better educate the community about the issues that affect teachers. Additionally the teachers hope that this will show Arizona lawmakers that they have the backing of their communities to push for increased state funding.

What are the teachers asking for?

From the Arizona Teachers United website, their mission is stated as “Arizona Educators United is a coalition of teachers, education support professionals, administrators, and those who care about the state of education in Arizona. Our goal is to ensure that students have access to highly qualified and experienced teachers, that educators are compensated fairly, and to improve the educational environment in the state of Arizona.”

The Arizona Teacher United are demanding the following:

20% raise for all teaching and certified staff

  1. 2018-2019 school year
  2. Built into the salary schedule at the district level, mandated by the state

Competitive wages for all classified staff

  1. Based on inflation rate of previous year
  2. Aim to pay job families comparatively/competitively with similar jobs in the local market
  3. Honor years of experience in school district employment

Return school funding to 2008 levels

  1. Decrease class sizes to 23:1
  2. Provide 21st century resources and curriculum materials

No new tax cuts until AZ per-pupil spending reaches national average

  1. Reapportionment of tax revenue should not hurt programs that help the low socio-economic status families and individuals
  2. Tax revenue should be generated from sources that are generated within the state economy

Yearly raises until AZ teacher salary reaches the national average

  1. Steps based on years of experience with no compression or reduction of years that qualify
  2. Lanes based on amount of education including work beyond an earned degree

What happens next?

Walk-outs are possible. The consistent message from teachers throughout Arizona is that they do not want to strike, but they will if they feel that is what is needed to make the changes that they want to take place.