State Watch

Arizona’s 10 largest school districts closing for teacher protests: report

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Dozens of school districts and charter schools across Arizona are planning to close on Thursday in response to a statewide teacher walkout. 

Among the 73 districts and charter schools closing their doors will be the state’s 10 largest school districts: Mesa, Tucson, Chandler, Peoria, Gilbert, Deer Valley, Paradise Valley, Dysart, Phoenix Union and Washington Elementary, The Arizona Republic reported

Several school districts have made it clear in letters to parents that school days that are missed because of the walkout will have to be made up at a later time, the Republic reported. 


Exactly how long the #RedForEd walkout will last is unclear. Arizona Educators United, a grass-roots teachers group, said that the length of the protest would depend on “the response from the Legislature and educators.”

According to the Republic, more than 40 school districts and charter networks plan to hold classes during the walkout, but many said that they would likely let students out early.

Other districts and charter networks were still trying to figure out how many school employees planned to participate in the walkout.

The #RedForEd walkout is the latest in a series of teacher-led protests that have broken out across the country in recent months. The demonstrations began with educators in West Virginia, who went on strike for more than a week to demand pay raises. 

But the planned walkout in Arizona could potentially be the largest such protest to date, as educators seek to call for higher wages and more funding for education. According to the Republic, Arizona has seen education funding cuts of nearly $1 billion since the recession more than a decade ago.

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