As the school day begins, teachers across Los Angeles will be going on strike for a single hour. Instead of signing in and walking into school, they will be gathering in front of their schools and informing parents of the impending California budget cuts– cuts which are threatening thousands of teacher positions across the district.
Officially, LAUSD has come out against the strike action. They have stated to newspapers that they want to see “teachers in the classroom” and that they are “concerned about student safety.” But, while teachers began planning the strike action months ago, LAUSD dragged its feet taking the teachers to court. LAUSD only filed for a temporary restraining order last Thursday. A judge denied the request, and LAUSD retaliation seems extraordinarily unlikely at this point. After all, they’re concerned about the fall out. United Teachers LA has vowed to fight any lay-offs: which means LAUSD and the Governor should be biting their nails and shaking in their boots.
My friends at charter schools tell me that they will not be participating: their higher-ups informed them a few weeks back that any budget cuts will be absorbed by the administrators and that teachers will not feel the pinch. Their unions remain mum on the situation. I don’t know if any other districts will be participating. (Do you know, gentle reader?)
This strike could only signal the beginning. UTLA estimates that nearly all its members will be participating today.
LAUSD votes on its proposed budget for the coming year next Tuesday.