Protest Wednesday Over Low Pay By Arizona TeachersTop Stories

March 07, 2018 19:18
Protest Wednesday Over Low Pay By Arizona Teachers

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Thousands of teachers from Arizona public school and their  supporters are expected to wear red color to work Wednesday in the protest of the low pay they say has worsened up the state's critical shortage of qualified teachers.

The emphasize on the statewide teacher protest started last week and since then has gained a high momentum on social media among teachers as mentioned by Noah Karvelis who is one of the organizers of the protest. More than 11,000 members were part of the group by Tuesday evening.

Karvelis made a closed Facebook group by the weekend called Arizona Teachers United to mobilize teacher's super for the protest.

Karvelis said Arizona teachers have been galvanized and started a nine day strike by the West Virginia teachers across all 55 of the school districts

Arizona and West Virginia are the same: They both rank among the lowest for teacher pay. When spoken about cost of living, median pay for elementary teachers in Arizona ranks 50th nationally at $42,474, as per to the Arizona State University Morrison Institute for Public Policy. The report has high-school teacher median pay at 49th nationally.

Karvelis said of West Virginia's teachers “They really set a strong example of what’s possible, even with a Republican governor, even with Right to Work being the law of the land essentially as it is here," They also added "That really emboldened us."

Arizona teacher pay continues to be among the lowest in the nation despite a 1% increase sanctioned by the Legislature last year, as well as an infusion of cash from a ballot measure known as Proposition 123.

The 2016 measure, initiated by Gov. Doug Ducey, managed a lawsuit filed by the school districts over the Legislature not fully funding inflation at the time of the Great Recession.

A lot of teachers have been unsatisfied by the state's efforts and have told they don't do enough to address the flood of qualified educators leaving Arizona's classrooms.


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