Teachers Strike for One-Hour Today

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.

9 Replies to “Teachers Strike for One-Hour Today”

  1. aaron, this tactic might not work at your workplace, but imagine it: 2 or 3000 kids on a single campus without a teacher for an hour. this produces a situation which LAUSD and the state would like to avoid. (although, since the strike has been PLANNED, safety plans are in place with admins, parent volunteers and out of classroom personnel).

    like many strikes, they begin symbolically. if our jobs are on the line, then we teachers are showing exactly what the repurcussions are going to be. laying off 6,500 teachers when we have needed MORE teachers for years is hardly sound public policy.

    imagine now that teachers went on strike for as long as the WGA did earlier this year. we’re not at that stage yet, but i’d say a one-hour strike is effective for teachers, as well as medical professionals and public servants of all kinds.

  2. They are protesting in front of my house. I didn’t even know there was a school down the way until the teachers and students marched by this morning. Go teachers!

  3. I have gone to two budget protest organized by parents. Neither got much media coverage. This teacher Job Action is getting TONS of media converges BEFORE it even happened. And I am sure there will be more media converge this evening and in tomorrow papers.

    And the district is scared. I and many other parents I have talked to, all got pre recorded phone calls from the Superintendent last night (7:00 pm-ish) blasting the teachers for taking this job action.

    Hell, is just an hour!!! And a planed well in advanced hour at that. What learning will our kids miss in that time that will not be- or has not already been- given to them at another time? And for the kids who walked the picket line with their parents (my second grader was out their with me for about ½ hour, her school, Micheltorena in Silver Lake, started the protest at 7:30 AM, before she joined her fellow classmate to watch “March or the Penguins” in the all purpose room) this was a great real live learning.

  4. << aaron, this tactic might not work at your workplace, but imagine it: 2 or 3000 kids on a single campus without a teacher for an hour. this produces a situation which LAUSD and the state would like to avoid. (although, since the strike has been PLANNED, safety plans are in place with admins, parent volunteers and out of classroom personnel). >>

    Nahh, this is just as “effective” as those kids who “walked out” of school when they did that “Day Without A Mexican” thing.

    If I walked out of my job, I’d be fired. Why should teachers by a special exception? Are they saying they’re better than me, a lowly accountant?

  5. if only YOU walked out of your job, you would be fired. so would i.

    if your ENTIRE OFFICE walked out of the job in protest of unsatisfactory management by your bosses, it might send a message to them to not take you guys for granted.

    as for being a special exception… civil servants (like teachers, firefighters, cops, postal workers, etc) are special exceptions. they are funded publicly. are you? (maybe you are: you might work for a govt office of some sort).

    but part of the social contract is that some positions are more essential than others: a public defender IS more essential than a corporate attorney… a cop IS more essential than private security… a doctor IS more essential than a pharmacy technician… and a teacher IS more essential than an accountant.

    after all, aaron, where would you be without all the teachers who taught you to perform your very “lowly” calculations?

    (PS: thanks annika)

  6. Aaron, the difference is that if you walk out of your job you’d be fired and another lowly accountant would replace you tomorrow. If Ms. Banneker and 6,500 of her friends walk out of their jobs, L.A. would fall into chaos tomorrow.

  7. True, true…I wasn’t thinking. And I’m not saying teachers aren’t essential. Just seems like they’re always wanting to walk out or go on strike, etc. etc. So, a lot of people end up not thinking so highly of public school teachers, forgetting how essential they, well, essentially are.

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