Commentary — 15 February 2019
For the Students!

Teachers from around the OUSD district may strike soon; students should be ready to support them

By Cindy Ho

On Feb. 8, students from all around the school district skipped school to have a student walkout. They protested in order to support the teachers’ negotiations with the Oakland Unified School District. The teachers are protesting for a better contract with lower class sizes and a 12% salary raise over the next three years. Which I think is fair since OUSD district teachers are underpaid.

This is like the teacher walkout that occurred on Jan. 18 where most of the teachers at many Oakland High schools left their classes to march and protest. On that day, many students who were present at Oakland High were allowed in different areas of the school like the library or gym to hang out because many of the teachers had no substitutes.

Very soon there may finally be a strike from the OUSD schools across the district to protest for the teachers’ negotiations. The exact date has not yet been set but it could be announced some time after Feb. 15. A strike is when people come together to protest for what they want by refusing to do their jobs until the opposing side agrees to their demand or at least come to a compromise.

In my opinion, it is only fair for the teachers from around the OUSD district to go on strike and for us as students to support them. The teachers have been working in schools for nearly two years without a contract. Their classes are constantly filled with students and their pay is less than other nearby school districts. It only makes sense for them to go strike. They are also given low pay compared to other districts nearby. It is expensive to live in the Bay Area because prices are really high. Many good teachers who work for a long time have to leave because they can’t afford to live in the Bay Area. Then that brings in new teachers who aren’t experienced.

That is why we as students should support our teachers on their future strike. The teachers have done many things for students like offering after-school help and providing the class with supplies. Students would have bigger voices because of all of our activity in social media and our daily lives. That can be proven on the day of the student walkout where students skipped school to help their teachers protest. We as students should provide our teachers with support as they have helped provide us with education.

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