Now would be a great time to update your wardrobe–with red! As educator walkouts and strikes swept the nation in the past year, one way to show solidarity was to wear “Red for Ed.” While we may need this show of strength soon in Texas, we’re asking all educators to don the color tomorrow to support the United Teachers Los Angeles–some 32,000 school employees in the nation’s second largest district who are ready to go on strike.
UTLA members are fighting for smaller classes sizes, higher pay, more school nurses and counselors, and a stop to charter school expansion taking resources from local schools. You can read more from UTLA President Alex Caputo Pearl on just how dire the situation is in his opinion piece for the Los Angeles Times.
The issues facing educators in Los Angeles mirror those facing many of us in Texas. Of particular concern is district superintendents falling in line with those who seek to privatize our school systems, starting with a rapid expansion of charter schools. So it’s important that we stand together–not only in Texas, but across the nation–to fight for our true public schools and the investment needed to strengthen them and our profession.
“I think what you’re seeing is people want to make conditions better for children and for themselves,” said Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers. “People have tried to talk to legislators or talk to their bosses … they’ve gotten dismissed or disparaged. A strike is not a first resort for anyone. It’s a last resort–especially for teachers who are asked to do more with less every day. And enough is enough.”