“You may have heard the media coverage or seen social media posts about the Arizona Educators United (AEU) #RedforEd group working to highlight the issue of low public education funding in our state. Our Cave Creek Unified teachers and staff have participated in the Wednesday morning walk-ins before school to bring attention to these concerns and had been joined by parents who have shown their support. These gatherings did not impact the school day or our students’ education and were conducted professionally and respectfully, setting a positive example for our students on how to peacefully bring attention to the public school funding crisis.
Governor Doug Ducey responded with a plan to provide our Arizona teachers with pay increases, as well as still provide our public schools with much needed capital dollars in the District Additional Assistance fund or DAA. DAA provides funding for such capital items as buses, buildings, building maintenance and classroom materials. This fund had been cut by 85% since the Great Recession and is critically needed. The Governor’s proposal would still need approval by the Arizona Legislature to move forward.
Despite the Governor’s proposal, the AEU has moved forward with a statewide vote of all public school teachers and classified staff to determine the support for a staff walk out. We do not know if a walk out or a sick out has been approved by those voting, any proposed length of time a proposed walk out, or any identified dates. CCUSD would hope to find a compromise that would support our education staff but avoid disrupting student learning. We are working with our school leadership to determine possible solutions to avoid closing our schools if a walk out in CCUSD would occur. However, if we have too few staff members to safely supervise our students, we may still be forced to close our schools. We ask that you consider an alternative plan for your student(s) in the event that our schools are forced to close.
In the event that we are unable to keep our schools open, we will use multiple modes of communication to alert families of the closures including out-dials, emails, the District Facebook, Twitter and Instagram social media and posting to our website. If a walk out would transpire after a school day begins, we will make sure all students are supervised until an authorized parent or guardian can pick them up or until the end of the school day when they would return home at their normal time.
It is our hope that teaching and learning continue through May 24th as planned. We will keep you updated as information becomes available. Thank you for your support and understanding as we navigate this unique situation.”