DURHAM – On May 16, 2018, more than 40 school districts closed for a day because they didn’t have enough teachers. They didn’t have enough teachers because so many called out sick to join a protest over teacher pay and serve as pawns in a political game, whether they were aware of it or not. Now it looks like it’s happening again, as Durham Public Schools announces it will close on May 1 for this year’s protest, in all its communist propaganda glory. Chapel Hill-Carrboro Schools, and Lexington Public Schools had already announced closures.
“[…] As of Monday, 568 teachers – about a quarter of Durham’s teaching staff – put in for leave for May 1, according to the district.
“On a typical day in May, DPS has 213 teachers absent. We are able to muster approximately 167 substitute teachers on such a day,” DPS spokesman Chip Sudderth told the media by email Monday. “At this time, given the lack of available substitute teachers and the likelihood of more requests for personal leave, it will not be possible to have adequate student supervision or instruction on that date.” […]”
Nothing says, “We’re for the kids,” like walking out on them. As the month of April passes, we can fully expect many more school districts to close because of insufficient teacher numbers on this day of protest. And, why not? Last year’s protest yielded teacher pay raises. Actually, that’s not true; teachers have been getting pay raises at one of the nation’s fastest rates for going on five years now. From Republican legislative majorities.
But the organizers of this event, the ultra-liberal wanna-be union, North Carolina Association of Educators (NCAE), have non concern with the facts of reality. Instead, they are most interest in fomenting political activity by peddling and amplifying the false narrative that Republicans just don’t care about teachers, or education, or even kids.
NCAE President Mark Jewell is predicting this year’s event will be even larger than 2018. That should mean good business from some of downtown Raleigh’s watering holes; last year several teachers abandoned the march to have some pre-noon beers.
One thing that is not getting larger, is the membership rolls of the NCAE. Of the nearly 100,000 teachers in the Old North State, the NCAE claims considerably less than half of them as members. Yet, it acts as if it speaks for all teachers, and it when the NCAE speaks, they do so with a radically Left of center political disposition.
Republican NC Superintendent of Public Instruction Mark Johnson, for one, thinks the teachers should stay in class for the kids’ sake.
“”I personally hope that teachers do not come on May 1 because we’ve had such a hard year this year with hurricanes and bad winter weather,” Johnson told WRAL News on Monday. “I just ask that teachers will consider coming perhaps on a day that doesn’t interfere with instruction. But also, importantly, we have certain school employees who won’t get paid if they don’t work, such as school bus drivers.” […]
“I ask that teachers come over spring break and meet with me, meet with their lawmakers. Let’s have productive conversations,” he said. “But again, this doesn’t mean we don’t support teachers, we just have to ultimately realize that a lot of consequences happen if we ask for a day off of school.” […]”
That seems like a very reasonable idea, yet it assumes the NCAE is really interested in having an honest, productive conversation – they do not. They are merely interested in tarring and feathering Republicans and making loud political statements to advance the Left’s narrative.
If they were being honest, perhaps they would actually be thanking Republican legislators for giving teachers pay raises six years in a row and increasing education funding.
Again, it is no coincidence that the protest was moved from last year’s date, to May 1 – International Workers’ Day. It’s essentially a communist holiday, and a symbol of the radical Left rising up in numbers around the world. Is that how the NCAE views this teacher protest? The NCAE may have provided the answer in their choice of a flyer for the event that featured the red, raised fist in the air.
Plain and simple, this event is a political stunt organized by NCAE. That doesn’t mean every teacher that participates is complicit in that stunt, or even aware of their status as political pawns, but the red shirts that will be sported by droves of protesting teachers on May 1 could have more to do with the Leftism of the NCAE than honest efforts to improve education.