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Pringle tells lawmakers 1 in 5 educators face layoffs due to COVID-19

In testimony before the House Education and Labor Committee on June 15, NEA Vice President Becky Pringle stressed the urgent need for immediate action on the next coronavirus package. In just three months, nearly half a million public education jobs have been lost due to the COVID-19 pandemic. “If this damage goes unchecked, nearly 2 million educators—one-fifth of the workforce—could lose their jobs over the next three years,” she said. Pringle also talked about the impact on the most vulnerable, students of color, and those from low-income families.

More than a month ago, the House passed the HEROES Act, which would provide $915 billion in direct relief for state and local governments that can be used to pay vital workers such as educators and $90 billion in additional education funding that could save more than 800,000 education jobs. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has refused to take up the HEROES Act, claiming there’s no need for immediate action to address the mounting damage from COVID-19.

NEA’s priorities for the next coronavirus package include at least $175 billion to stabilize education funding, at least $4 billion to equip students with hot spots and devices to help narrow the digital divide and close the homework gap, at least $56 million in directed funding for personal protective equipment, relief for student loan borrowers, and at least $4 billion to protect voting rights and make voting by mail more widely available.


Email your senators and tell them to take action to reopen schools safely and save education jobs.

 

78 responses to “Pringle tells lawmakers 1 in 5 educators face layoffs due to COVID-19

  1. I am a retired teacher (both regular classroom and special education classroom). Both of my sons are teachers. It’s a wonderful profession, with plenty of rewarding moments. Both of my sons are superb at their jobs, better than I was.

    One of the things that makes this country great is public education.

    I hope we get the support we need to continue this great adventure.

    1. I went to private school for nine years of my childhood then 4 years of public high school. So I can see the different in both educational systems. I now have sent my children to public preschool and public elementary school for the last 6 years. Since we don’t live in the town were the public preschool was we had to pay tuition to the school district which was in New Jersey. If these parents want their children to attend private school then they must pay for it. Public tax money should not be given to private schools where the govern can not control the academics instructed or the character education aspect. I love the fact that my taxes pay for my children’s public schools were we live. We can send our children to school knowing they are getting the best education possible which is backed up by data from the various curriculum – the district is more then willing to show you this information. I went to lousy private schools as a child. My friend’s daughter went to a Charter School that was awful for instance their entire social studies curriculum was one booklet from Scholastic Books Clubs offered every two weeks. That is absolutely ridiculous.

    2. Why is it education and educators are so important when we are in crisis mode, but when we are the most in need, there is no support? The government is bailing out businesses, but not the future of business.
      DeVos is furthering her agenda and public education is suffering as a result. Private schools are already funded by those who wish to pay for that type of education.
      All of the public officials who run on platforms touting their support of education should step up and do what they said they were going to do – fund education!
      Gov. Polis promised full-day kindergarten with no way to fund it! Now we are facing the consequences of that promise with pay cuts and forced furlough days. Is he taking a pay cut?

    3. I agree. People do not realize that the payments given to private schools comes out of the budget for the public schools. The public school system should not be paying for religious education and a smaller classroom setting. The tuition responsibility for private schools should be on the backs of those parents who choose a private school.

  2. Our kids are our future. Let them rise to a new beginning with every possibility that we as educators can provide.

  3. Keep our kids safe, and let’s make sure everything is in place before we welcome our charges back to school.

  4. Please insure that schools are sanitized professionally and not just by custodians who are not equipped. Dirty carpets, inadequate bathrooms and floors need to be cleaned and sanitizing needs to be done during intervals in the day. Nurses need to be in place, or equipment used by qualified personnel to take temperatures during regular intervals. Teachers and parents need to be able to have a say in their safety\children’s safety.

    1. I teach Kinder. These vjildrem are high maintenance in terms of passing germs. They sre learning anout boundaries. Now, with Covid 19 measures. it is difficult for them to understand that they will no longer get positive contact with their teachers like their siblings did in the pass.

        1. I think that was written on a cellphone. The person might have problems with texting and eye sight, not eduaction…we should be more understanding… If you look at the keyboard, you will notice that the “c”and the “v” are next to each other, and so are the “j”and the “h”, as are the “n” and the “m”. Someone who was in a hurry, probably typed that out quickly on a cellphone keyboard. The person probably has a lot of patience and kindness. Anyone who works with kindergardeners has my support and respect. I love little kids, but as the techer stated “they are learning about boundries”. That means the kids are all over you, each other, and everything in the classroom (and they are germy and sick all the time because they are developing immunities to whatever anyone else has). This is a bigger concern for her (and me) than a few typos on a message someone texted. It fair to say that keeping things sanitary with this population is difficult (and that’s under normal circumstances). But she also points out a very important issue; kids at this age are also learning social behavior and positive interpersonal interactions are very important at this stage…as they are at all stages in life. Teachers don’t just teach “spelling”, they teach and model appropriate social interactions (ie. behavior). You might think kids in kindergarden go to school to learn how to read, but just as importantly, they go to school to learn how to get along with others and respect their peers. They learn how to be social beings. Being in quarentine is very hard for them, but getting sick (or being asymtomatic) and spreading germs, could be dealy for the communities we live in.

          1. Fair enough. I’m ordinarily not one to play spelling and grammar police, but those were so glaring and frequent that they were hard to ignore. Not to mention that you really do make yourself look like a fool if you don’t proofread before posting.

  5. Please pass Heros Act and keep funds for public not privitized education. Please be sure to keep this stimulus away from corporations.

    1. As a kindergarten teacher at an innercity school, I see the disadvantage that my students contend with every day. My students need a quality education in a well funded school to enable them to learn and grow into productive members of our community.

    2. I come to you once again to plead for you to do the right and humane thing by passing the Heros Act.
      What would your true reason be for taking money from public schools to give to private education? Private schools, as you well know don’t need this funding. Public schools don’t have money flowing in all the time like private schools do.
      Please pass the Heros Act and keep the stimulus away from corporations. We need it; they do not. I taught in public schools for 38 years, now retired. I cannot believe I’m still begging for funds for public schools; why is this still necessary?

    3. Invest in our children and give public schools what they need. Privatisation of everything is only about money and children always loose.

    4. I am a Speech-Language Pathologist who has worked in both public schools and charter schools. Please pass Heros Act and keep funds for public not privitized education. Please be sure to keep this stimulus away from corporations.

    1. As a kindergarten teacher at an innercity school, I see the disadvantage that my students contend with every day. My students need a quality education in a well funded school to enable them to learn and grow into productive members of our community.

  6. You need to make sure that educators keep their jobs to make sure that more students receive an education.

    1. You need to make sure that educators keep their jobs to make sure that more students receive an education.

      1. As a kindergarten teacher at an innercity school, I see the disadvantage that my students contend with every day. My students need a quality education in a well funded school to enable them to learn and grow into productive members of our community.

    2. You need to make sure that educators keep their jobs to make sure that more students receive an education.

      1. As a kindergarten teacher at an innercity school, I see the disadvantage that my students contend with every day. My students need a quality education in a well funded school to enable them to learn and grow into productive members of our community.

      1. As a kindergarten teacher at an innercity school, I see the disadvantage that my students contend with every day. My students need a quality education in a well funded school to enable them to learn and grow into productive members of our community.

    3. Please make that there is funding in place for vital educators and other classified Public School workers to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. Thank you.

    4. During this pandemic the educators have stepped up 120%. Why take away from those that need it most. You say we are heroes then show it by being on our side and not taking from us. Our low income students will suffer the most throughout all this. Help us continue to help them give them the education they need.

  7. Thanks to our Vice President Pringle for her support. However,to
    achieve a positive outcome everyone should make a concerted
    help.

  8. The HEROES act is federally funded so yes, the school need their support and based on our current department of education secretary….hmm

  9. Please help. The future of the United States is in the education of our future citizens. Support our teachers; save their jobs!

  10. Teachers and students (and parents) have it harder than ever in these days of remote learning and social distancing. We cannot afford to let this current generation of kids slip through the cracks in a misguided effort to save money. Our country’s future is at stake. I fully support this effort.

  11. We have seen government give billions and billions to large corporations and billionaires that do NOT need it!! Now is the time to give billions and billions to our schools and the children of America!

  12. Education is the backbone of our society and despite that, it has been defunded for decades. Schools and educators simply cannot afford to be stretched more thin than they already are. We must massively reprioritize our funding in this country to reflect our values of ensuring all of our children have equal opportunity to contribute positively to our society and earn a living in this competitive economy. COVID-19 is not an excuse to put schools on the chopping block again. No excuses at all—this country is massively wealthy and we do not distribute our resources fairly or with an eye toward ensuring our future is one in which our citizens and communities can thrive. Take money from the Pentagon if needed.

  13. In order for students, teachers, and school staff to be safe in school this fall all of us that enter any school building must be tested for the coronavirus. We must make testing a priority to safeguard the lives of teachers, staff, and students. Without mandated testing, it is a fear that not all students and staff will be alive at the end of the school year. Trump wants testing reduced so he can say that the number of coronavirus cases is down as a political statement to win the election. We need to be the ones with common sense and do what we can to safeguard the lives of our students, teachers, staff, and community members. Please support all efforts to protect our educational system and all within it.

  14. Remote Learning does not work well for all students. Some need face-to-face contact to be a successful learner. We need solutions that provide the best learning opportunities and maintain the safety of all students. Cutting school funding and staff does neither. Please step up to this challenge. Our children need your best efforts!

  15. This is the change our political union leadership is asking for. Change comes with a cost. That’s just life. There are consequences for what your vocal big school district reps vote for.

      1. Help starts at the local school districts. The government can not fix every little thing. It’s up to the each individual school district, citizens, and parents of each district to take action and fix their own problems. The government has given too many unfunded mandates, have taken too much control over our citizens education. Instead of looking outward (big Government), look inward (We the People), for your answers. This is where to look for help.

        1. Would you please look for another career path since you have absolutely no intention of honoring the oath you took when taking office. We need someone that is in touch with the real world and not the one you built just for yourself!

          1. I must be missing something here. Is Jim an elected official? If not, what oath and office are you talking about?

        2. Why do our comments “need to be approved?”
          Is it because we may disagree with what the NEA tells us as educators to be doing? What has happened to the power of free speech?

          1. It’s just a spam check. Now that you’ve been approved, you should be able to comment without needing further approval in the future.

    1. This is the change our political union leadership is asking for. Change comes with a cost. That’s just life. There are consequences for what your vocal big school district reps vote for.

  16. This country is in terrible danger from within. Its children MUST be kept safe, and given the best education possible. And that education MUST BE AVAILABLE TO ALL OUR CHILDREN EQUALLY. Our children are our future.

  17. Our students of all ages require more rather than less during this current moment in which our “new challenges” are having a disproportionate impact on those members of our society who have already been bearing the brunt of historic inequality. Educational opportunity must not be further endangered, and there is absolutely no reason it needs to be. If we don’t put the needed funds here–and we always manage to find the money for what’s “important”–let’s admit we don’t care about young people or the future.

  18. Thank you for your public service. You had strong educators to help you get where you are in life. We are filling those spaces, and we aim to prepare our youth for their future roles of public service. We all need to work together to make our society and world more engaged.

  19. There is no more important job in society than educating the next generation. They WILL take over – how they do it is up to us. It would be terribly short-sighted to then blame them for shortcomings if we have not provided them the means to manage.

  20. For our teachers who need the funds to do the job the constitution demands of them. That our lawmakers are failing us like US senator Mitch McConell who more concerned about reelection and staying in power.

    1. Please make funding our schools a priority during this pandemic. Please especially make sure that students that come from struggling socio-economic areas have proper access to education. Please make sure ALL students have access and even requirements to take classes in the arts, personal wellness, world language, FACS and industrial techniques. Please help schools provide quality mental health assistance to students in need. Thank you!

    2. For our teachers who need the funds to do the job the constitution demands of them. That our lawmakers are failing us like US senator Mitch McConell who more concerned about reelection and staying in power.

  21. Thank you for continuing to support education. Our students need us more than ever to provide with social and emotional support during this pandemic going forward.

    1. Educators are front line workers. They work with all chi8ldren some of whom parents are at a loss to help. They need all the help they can get from a government who needs them to support our next generation.

  22. Our teachers are over worked now. I don’t want to think what it would be like if jobs are lost and extra work put on the ones left.

  23. Do something please! I am a displaced teachers and I cannot find another school right now because of COVID-19.

  24. The neglect of poor people in all economic areas is outrageous. The wealth gap is outrageous. The neglect of our policymakers is outrageous. No wonder why we have to take to the streets.

  25. Good Morning,
    I am writing to you with my many hats on. I am a parent, a teacher and an elected public official in Blooming Prairie, MN and I have grave fears for the education of our K-12 students if this relief bill is not passed. Small school districts need funding to ensure continued learning programs. Please support the next coronavirus package .

  26. If we are ever to have a fair and just society, we must begin with equal educational opportunity including identification and appropriate support for those who need help to succeed.

    1. As an Special Educator in the Bronx, I have been working diligently through remote teaching to ensure that all of my students are provided with a rigorous and comprehensive learning experience. Unfortunately, due to lack of Internet access, under-educated parents, Covid-19 illness and death, and other factors, not all students were able to participate. This is a wide ranging situation for many teachers. As a result, we are now creating learning plans which address and rectify these learning deficits. This goal will not be reached with less teachers. After teaching in the Bronx for twelve years, my question is always the same: “Why do my young scholars deserve less teachers, materials, and quality learning experiences than your children?”

    2. I am a preschool special needs teacher. I know absolutely how much we need equal educational opportunities for all students. There is no excuse for not making it happen. Every penny spent now will pay enormous dividends later.

    3. Equality in all levels is a necessity. This country needs to move forward and it won’t be able to unless we have a strong foundation and it begins with a strong education.

    4. The living income between the working class and wealthy is outrageous. Every child, working adult deserves equitable living wages and educational opportunities! The lack of response and concern from elected officials is why people are protesting in the streets!

    5. We have to get this together. The need support in education. We need to get our future generation ready. We need to give them equal opportunity- a good education.

  27. I added my own paragraph.

    As a retired school library media specialist, I can tell you that school libraries and library media specialists will be one of the first groups to lose their jobs. Despite our ability to access knowledge in print and digital formats and to teach students, parents, and other teachers how to access and evaluate these sources as well as making sure our students have access to reading material, and because we don’t carry a class load like other teachers do, our positions will be cut first. 45 years of experience has shown me that this will happen unless the Senate takes action.

  28. Education is the key to progress for our country. Please do whatever is possible to support educational policies that ensure students of all economic backgrounds get the bat education possible.

  29. Please open all school safely for SY 2020-2021. Our children are the future leaders of tomorrow. Please fund underserved minority communities with the same resources as in the non Title 1 schools.

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