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Idaho Education Association releases statement of support for teachers

Idaho Education Association releases statement of support for teachers
Posted at 8:42 AM, Oct 19, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-19 10:42:32-04

MERIDIAN, Idaho — The Idaho Education Association (IEA) President released a statement Sunday expressing support for teachers in the West Ada district.

We hope the West Ada school board and administration will reach out to the West Ada Education Association to work together on finding a timely resolution that provides a safe working and learning environment in the district’s school buildings.

In a vacuum of rules from the State, local districts are trying to figure out the best approach for themselves. In this case, the dramatic actions taken by the educators of West Ada are a last resort after the district refused to work with, and listen to, their own educators to create the best possible outcomes for students. These are educators who have been at the heart of the success enjoyed by the district and are steadfast supporters of the community.

These West Ada teachers want to be in classrooms with their students but are unable to do so because of mismanagement of safety protocols and lack of transparency in reporting of COVID-19 cases by the district. They are unable to achieve proper physical distancing because of large class sizes and inadequate facilities.

The combination of a mishandling of safety plans by the district and a failure by the state to provide adequate resources have left educators with no other recourse. We hope the district will include input from their educators, and from medical experts, as they plot a course that will get teachers and students back into classrooms—safely.
Layne McInelly, IEA President

Teachers tell us the sick out could last more than one day, but for now, the district plans to continue with alternating in-person learning days starting Tuesday. A memo from Superintendent Mary Ann Ranells says out of 2,145 classroom teachers, 652 have called out, leaving the district with 500 unfilled positions.

Related: West Ada cancels school Monday, cites sub shortage due to 'sickout'

Students in the district will be able to order and pick up meals on Monday, despite the closures. Families can pick up meals between 10:50 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. All meals will be made available by curbside pick-up. For more information, click here.