Arizona Education Association, Educators United call for walk-out vote

The RedforEd movement, led by the Arizona Education Association and Arizona Educators United says it can’t support Gov. Doug Ducey’s budget proposal.

“As educators, we know what students need,” AEA President Joe Thomas said in a prepared statement.

“If we’re serious about giving every student a great education, we need to get serious about doing what works—and this budget just doesn’t work for Arizona’s students.”

According to a press release, the education officials say they can’t support the proposal not because what’s in it, but because of what’s missing.

Students need one-on-one attention, up-to-date text books and well-maintained facilities with operational air conditioning, the press release states, and calls for a budget that brings funding levels up so students have a chance at success.

“In addition, many of our colleagues, like cafeteria workers, janitors and bus drivers – people who take care of students and keep them safe – are left out of this proposal,” AEU organizer and Littleton teacher Noah Karvelis said in a prepared statement. “We need an inclusive budget that recognizes everyone’s hard work at the school.”

Finally, Gov. Ducey’s proposal doesn’t explain where this new funding is coming from or how he’s going to maintain it in the future, the press release states.

The claim that he’s giving teachers a 20 percent raise is disingenuous at best, the release states.

“And it’s not the first time we’ve seen this bait and switch from him. Without knowing where the money is coming from and how it will be sustained, the proposal is nothing but empty promises,” the press release states.

The AEA and AEU officials say they are going to begin a statewide vote on whether to do a walk out.

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