To urge state legislators to pass a budget that fully funds public education as thousands of teachers are bracing for layoff notices, teachers, students, parents and supporters will gather outside of Bay Area schools and blow bubbles this morning.
"Don't Blow It!" the education supporters are telling state lawmakers, who are expected to make further cuts to education with the forthcoming budget and will announce teacher layoffs today.
The protesters will meet at dozens of schools throughout the Bay Area before students are dropped off and, while some will be protesting silently and others will be boisterous, they all intend to blow bubbles.
Four Pacifica Schools--, , and Elementary Schools--will all host rallies with bubble blowing this morning, said Kalimah Salahuddin, president of Saving Pacifica Schools and organizer of local protests.
She said that dedicated people will be at the site, even with the weather the way it is.
“The current budget ties education funding to a not-yet-passed initiative in November despite the fact schools need to pay for their teachers and programs now," said Kalimah Salahuddin, who is an Educate Our State board member. "We are fed up with the state of education in California and the inability of the legislature to provide the leadership to support our schools,”
At least four schools in San Francisco will be hosting a protest. At 7:30 a.m. bubble blowers will gather at Dianne Feinstein Elementary School and at McKinley Elementary School, located at 2550 25th Ave. and 1025 14th St., respectively.
At 8:30 a.m., a demonstration will begin at Presidio Middle School, located at 450 30th Ave., followed by protests at Gateway Middle School and Junipero Serra Elementary School at 8:30 a.m., located at 380 Webster St. and 625 Holly Park Circle, respectively.
In Oakland, the protesters will meet at Glenview Elementary School at 8 a.m. at 4215 La Cresta Ave. and at Thornhill Elementary School at 5880 Thornhill Drive at 8:15 a.m.
Other protests, all planned by "Educate Our State," are planned at schools throughout the Bay Area, including Atherton, Burlingame, Half Moon Bay, Lafayette, Mill Valley, Piedmont, Redwood City, San Anselmo and San Mateo.
A full list of events can be found at www.thisbudgetblows.org.
The education budget has been cut statewide every year for the last four years, and while a tax initiative on the November ballot supported by Gov. Jerry Brown may help mitigate the cuts, it won't come before districts statewide are expected to have to shrink their budgets once again.
Today, March 15, is the deadline for districts to alert employees to possible layoffs, and thousands of teachers statewide are expected to get layoff notices today as the districts begin preparing their budgets.
Depending on how much funding is promised by the state, not all the employees that receive notices may lose their jobs, but without a state budget being passed, districts must prepare for funding shortfalls and alert staff to potential layoffs.
--Bay City News
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