The state of Michigan needs a total recall when it comes to its politicians. For the past year, the city of Flint has been subjected to lead poisoning from its water supply after switching from the Detroit water system (Lake Huron) to the Flint River in efforts to cut costs.
While Detroit may have the safer water, it suffers from a haphazard school system and the city’s teachers have had enough.
In the past week, approximately 900 teachers called out sick resulting in 85 of the districts 100 schools having to close and nearly 31,000 of the district’s 46,000 students missing several days of school.
The teachers are protesting their deplorable working conditions, which include mold growing out of the walls, leaking roofs, rodent infestations and buildings without heat. This is in addition to a lack of supplies, overcrowded classrooms and low pay.
“If our current state law isn’t sufficient to prevent activists from hurting kids, it’s time we strengthen it,” said Republican Sen. Phil Pavlov of St. Clair Township out of Detroit. He is one of the states lawmakers who’s proposed stiffer consequences for teachers who participate in protests.
According to ABC News, if passed, new legislation would “empower the state superintendent to revoke their teaching certificates and impose larger fines.”
“It is regrettable that the Detroit Public Schools seeks to punish those who speak out about the deplorable conditions in our schools,” said Ivy Bailey interim president, for the Detroit Federation of Teachers.
The Detroit school district tried to stifle the “sickout” by filing a temporary restraining order against the educators. “The district named the Detroit Federation of Teachers’ union, activists and two dozen educators as defendants in the lawsuit that was filed Wednesday,” reports ABC News.
Michigan Court of Claims Judge Diane Stephens denied the request. Still, this is merely the start of an uphill legal battle between administrators, the school district, and entitled politicians who would probably never enroll their children in the schools they have no interest in improving.