Students demand meeting with governing board; district votes to fire all teachers and staff at Rincon High School
On Tuesday, Feb. 8 hundreds gathered to attend the Tucson Unified School District board meeting and speak out against the district’s attack on teachers and the state’s attack on ethnic studies. At least 200 people gathered beforehand to show support and listen as a group of students calling themselves "UNIDOS" organized a press conference prior to the meeting that included testimony from current and former students, hip-hop and break dancing, while hundreds more packed the meeting inside.
The standing-room only audience spilled out of the meeting room, the adjacent hallway and into the street as speaker after speaker spoke out against HB2281, Arizona’s law banning ethnic studies, and TUSD’s response. Others spoke out to defend teachers, in anticipation of the school board’s vote to fire all teachers and staff at Rincon High School as part of a state-sponsored transformation plan. A vote on a similar “transformation plan” for Palo Verde magnet school was tabled until the next TUSD meeting.
After stalling for about 20 minutes, the school board finally allowed a delegation from UNIDOS to speak, who proceeded to demand that the board meet with students, teachers and parents at a location of UNIDOS’ choosing, within 30 days. Pointing out that “97.5% of students that take the classes graduate high school and 70% will seek out education beyond the high school level”, the students also demanded that rather than eliminate ethnic studies, the program should be expanded to other districts across the state.
- radical-arizona posted this