School City of Mishawaka discusses Red for Ed closure at school board meeting

Amy Foley, President of the Mishawaka Education Association, speaks at Wednesday\'s school board meeting. (Photo: Mishawaka Network)

MISHAWAKA, Ind.—The School City of Mishawaka at Wednesday night’s school board meeting discussed the decision to cancel school on November 19.

SCM previously announced that schools will be closed on November 19 so that teachers and staff may attend the Red for Ed Action Day in Indianapolis. The make-up day is scheduled for March 20, 2020.

The decision to close school on November 19 was made by the School Board, school administrators, and the Mishawaka Education Association.

School Board President Richard Currey released the following statement regarding SCM’s participation in the Red for Ed Action Day:

"SCM is happy to support our staff and the thousands of other Indiana educators, administrators, community members, and parents who will be attending the Red for Ed Action Day at the Indiana Statehouse in Indianapolis. The heart of Red for Ed is to advocate on behalf of not only Mishawaka students but all students across the state.

The Indiana State Teachers Association has identified the following goals as urgent issues:

  • Increased Teacher Compensation
  • Hold Harmless from ILEARN
  • Repeal new PGP & Externship requirements

It is important to understand that the decision to support our teachers to attend this event, rather than being present with our students, is not an easy one. We would much rather be at school teaching our students. However, inadequate funding that impacts class sizes, excessive high stakes standardized testing, teacher shortages, and failed accountability models are negatively impacting our students."

Mishawaka Education Association President Amy Foley spoke at the meeting, saying the decision was difficult, as “teachers do not want to be out of his or her classroom for any reason,” but have chosen to advocate for public education at the state capitol.

“We want our students to have access to counselors, social workers and mental health professionals. We want out students to benefit from smaller class sizes. We want to relieve our students from the stress of excessive high stakes testing. We want our students taught by licensed professionals who are paid well enough to remain in the profession,” Foley said, thanking SCM for supporting teacher participation in Red for Ed.

One of Foley’s former students, School Board member Amanda Roberts, echoed Foley’s sentiments, saying that the board must show support for the issues teachers are speaking out against.

To learn more about the Red for Ed Action Day, visit the Indiana State Teachers Association website.

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