Arizona, Colorado teachers rally; schools close for 2nd day

Arizona, Colorado teachers rally; schools close for 2nd day

A right-to-work state, Arizona doesn't allow teachers to collectively bargain, and teachers could lose their teaching credentials if they participate in a statewide strike.

First, teachers earn salaries lower than comparably educated professionals. It's a right to work state just like us, " Buckley said.

But as we've seen all over the country since Donald Trump's election, protest is contagious, and builds on itself.

"Today, we are pleased to announce that this plan is a reality".

The state has not kept up with a constitutional mandate to increase school funding each year by at least the rate of inflation, the CEA says. "We have been working in under-funded schools for a long time".

The state House and Senate adjourned on Thursday instead of Friday this week, avoiding the estimated 5,000 protestors who showed up on Friday.

Hill, who has introduced a bill that would increase the state's education budget by $500 million, eagerly engaged small groups of teachers outside and inside the State capitol. She said she had a "wake-up call" when she learned a teacher paid out of pocket for a field trip. "There's five demands, there has been from the beginning". "We want people to know that this isn't something that just happened a week ago". By 2015 they were making 17% less.

Gov. Doug Ducey announces a plan to give teachers a 20 percent raise over the next three fiscal years. Educators in Oklahoma and Kentucky followed. It was the first teacher walkout in the state's history.

Stay with azfamily.com for the latest on teacher walkouts and school closures and what you need to know. Education advocates need to align with anti-dark money activists, sustainable energy supporters and others to form a broad-based political movement that leads to a new majority, and tactically a strike isn't the best way to do that.

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"And if they don't' listen, if they continue to ignore us then I think we take a ballot initiative out and we got to do this ourselves", he said.

"Some of that, you had conservative legislatures filled with people that were not fans of the public schools, believed they were too liberal on some social issues and maybe used that as an excuse to vote against raising the pay of teachers", Todd said. "And I strive to for her to get the best", Wyaco said. "That's a mixed message you're sending the public and the country about who you really are and what your priorities are". When teachers lack strong collective representation, scrappy new grass-roots organizations like Arizona Educators United can quickly build followings.

- Teachers in Arizona and Colorado turned their state Capitols into a sea of red Thursday as they kicked off widespread walkouts that shut down public schools in a bid for better pay and education funding, building on educator revolt that emerged elsewhere in the USA but whose political prospects were not clear. That could help restore the $1 billion that has been cut from state aid to schools in the past decade.

Sonnenberg blamed the union for the walkout, stating he was told the union was pressuring its members to converge on the Capitol after the state budget for 2018-19 was already set.

She points out that in a longtime red state where many Republican lawmakers have taken pledges never to raise taxes, Ducey's election-year promise is full of fuzzy math and has no real legislative support.

The move comes after Ducey and Republican lawmakers have rebuffed demands by education groups to come up with a dedicated source of funding for not just the pay raise but other education needs.

On the eve of Arizona's unprecedented walkout, one young Tolleson Union High School teacher was feeling the stress in a different way. Further, states that immiserate their teachers eventually lose leverage over them. Net corporate tax revenues on which public schools depend are off dramatically after a decade of tax cuts, and vouchers have served mainly to transfer public dollars to private and religious schools, regardless of educational outcome.

An issue not addressed in those bills is the cost of housing, which teachers point out has become so expensive that it's beyond their reach in numerous communities in which they work.