A Teacher’s Passion Can Lead to Something More

Following the recent trend of school walk outs, teachers have been finding their own ways to protest against unfairness. It’s no secret that most teachers’ pay is very low. This has been going on for decades and now teachers are striking back. But it’s not just about the low paying situation, but rather the inadequate resources to teach their students. After the U.S. suffered from the Great Recession of 2008, the Liberal Center on Budget and Policy Priorities has noted that at least 29 states were still spending less in 2015 than they were before 2008, meaning old, outdated books from years ago are still being reused, even to this day.
The sight of other successful protests has given people the courage to try it out as well. The lunch counter civil rights protesting in the 1960s are a prime example, along with the Occupy protests involving homelessness in communities across the United States in 2011. The teacher protesting goes hand-in-hand with the student protesting. It seems that a climate of free expression is alive in school today with students protesting against lax gun laws, and teachers protesting about pay rights. Both movements just want to make going to school a better and safer experience for everyone.
With the hashtags #RedforEd and #TheResistance, you can clearly see how affected everyone is from all of these protests that are spreading across the United States. Last month 30,000-50,000 teachers and supporters marched throughout Phoenix and rallied at the Arizona State Capitol, demanding a 20 percent raise and the return of $1 billion to school funding in this post-Great Recession era. In Colorado, 10,000 and more teachers demonstrated in Denver as part of a burgeoning teacher uprising, where the teachers walked out using their personal leave time. Even in West Virginia there has been protesting and success. After just nine days of striking, Governor Jim Justice agreed to set up task forces and gave teachers a 5 percent raise, while not challenging the existence of their union. This is all a gradual change to our country.
As a growing school community, it’s our responsibility to be aware of every fault that goes on, whether it’s near or far. Protesting to make a difference is something that always impresses others, and encourages them to join in, especially if they agree with the cause or like the success rate so far. The protesting teachers show that it’s worth waiting for certain outcomes. For decades, this unfair treatment has been going on—all it needed was a new generation of people who wouldn’t stand for such things.