Media Advisory: CEA Announces Statewide Day of Action, March 19

Educators to march on Capitol for higher teacher pay, increased school funding

DENVER – With the clock ticking on important education funding bills at the Colorado State legislature, the time for action is now. Thousands of educators across Colorado will descend on the Capitol, March 19, to rally before the legislature for the schools our students deserve.

WHO: Thousands of educators, many of whom have great difficulty affording Colorado’s extremely high cost of living, need to hold multiple jobs to make ends meet, and have seen their districts struggle to retain quality educators and provide adequate resources and supports for students.

WHAT: CEA Day of Action

WHEN: Thursday, March 19, 9:00 to 2:00

WHERE: Start at Civic Center Park, March to West Steps of Colorado State Capitol

WHY: Colorado has the least competitive educator pay in the country and continues to make deep cuts to school funding through the budget stabilization factor ($572 million in the current school year; $8.1 billion since 2010).

Members of the Colorado Education Association will join with parents, students and public education supporters to specifically call on the Colorado General Assembly to pass Senate Bill 089, which will create a dedicated incentive fund with the explicit purpose to increase educator salaries across Colorado. Educators will additionally call upon legislators to reduce the budget stabilization factor by at least $100 million in this session and to commit to eliminating these cuts to public schools by 2022.

“Raising educator compensation across the state is our top legislative priority. Lawmakers will hear our mighty collective voice, March 19, on how difficult it is for an educator to make a decent living in this state while the rest of the economy soars,” said CEA President Amie Baca-Oehlert, a high school counselor. “Lawmakers must take bold action now to keep quality educators in our classrooms to support Colorado’s greatest resource, our students.”

School districts that have announced plans to close school for students March 19 include Adams 12 Five Star Schools, Adams County School District 14, Boulder Valley School District, Brighton 27J Schools, Clear Creek School District, Denver Public Schools, Englewood Schools, Jeffco Public Schools, Littleton Public Schools, Mapleton Public Schools, Sheridan School District No. 2, and Weld Re-8 School District (Fort Lupton).

More educators will attend the Day of Action from school districts that are already closed March 19 for Spring Break, including Aurora Public Schools, Cañon City Schools, Cherry Creek School District, Douglas County School District, Durango School District 9-R, Falcon School District 49, Greeley-Evans School District 6, Poudre School District, Roaring Fork School District, Thompson School District R2-J, and Weld County School District RE-1 (Gilcrest).

The Day of Action will bring awareness to the Fair Tax Colorado ballot measure (Initiative 271) that could be used to fund the SB-089 proposal and eliminate the budget stabilization factor.

Media wanting to attend CEA’s Day of Action should contact Mike Wetzel at mwetzel@coloradoea.org or 720-454-5729, and should download CEA’s State of Education report for context on the detrimental impacts of Colorado’s chronic underfunding of our public schools.

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