Schools could close if teachers in the Maricopa Unified School District walk-out in the future. Information posted to the MUSD website was published Thursday evening ahead of a highly anticipated announcement by leaders of the #RedForEd movement.
Information posted to the MUSD website was published Thursday evening ahead of a highly anticipated announcement by leaders of the #RedForEd movement.
The Arizona Education Association and Arizona Educators United coalition are expected to reveal the results of a statewide vote April 19 at 8 p.m. to determine teachers’ support of a future walk-out.
Teachers participated in the voting this week, as well as their second walk-in on April 18.
The vote comes after widespread rebuke from the Arizona education community regarding Gov. Doug Ducey’s budget proposal that he said would increase teacher salaries by 20 percent – including the one percent raise approved last year.
AEU and AEA leaders have criticized the proposal as hastily presented and shortsighted.
The date and length of the proposed walk-out is still unknown. MUSD Human Resources Director Tom Beckett said leaders of the local teacher association assured district officials “no walk-out is scheduled for Friday.”
Any days MUSD schools are spent in closure due to the walk-out will have to be made up at the end of the school year, according to the district document.
“If a walkout occurs, the only way to ensure the safety and well-being of our students is to close our schools. We notified families of the possibility of a walk out and we have asked parents to make a plan for alternate arrangements for their children if a walk out occurs. The district will not have staff to provide any services at the school site. The district could not vet outside resources, so would not be able to make any recommendations for child care options, feeding options, or any services not directly provided by the district.”
Superintendent Tracey Lopeman encouraged parents in a district email to rely on the MUSD internal communication “ConnectEd” to stay informed on possible school closures:
“Dear MUSD parents,
You may be aware that many of our teachers and staff have been participating in statewide efforts to increase awareness for teacher and staff salaries and the need for additional public education funding.
These efforts have included a rally at the State Capitol, social media campaigns and peaceful walk-ins to schools each Wednesday morning. Staff are organizing independently and on their own time. We respect our teachers and staff in their unity efforts and appreciate that they are non-disruptive of the instructional day.
We want to make you aware that there is the potential for teacher walk-outs across Arizona. No decision or date has been set by the organizers, but as a district we are working to determine the impact on school operations. In the event of a work stoppage, we would more than likely close the schools and do everything we can to provide you with advanced notice. We will use our ConnectEd notification system to get information to you. Please make sure that your phone numbers and email address are current in our student information system.
We are fortunate to have a community that consistently supports our schools. We appreciate our dedicated employees who continue to focus on meeting the needs of our students. And we appreciate all of you and your support of our schools while these statewide actions are under way.
Dr. Tracey Lopeman and Superintendent’s Cabinet”
Stay with InMaricopa.com and check in with our social media for updates on the walk-out vote.