Why it's unlikely there will be a statewide teacher strike in Colorado

Bill proposed jail for Colorado teachers who go on strike

Bill proposed jail for Colorado teachers who go on strike

State legislators in Colorado proposed a bill April 20 that prohibits school districts from supporting a teacher strike and would require districts to dock teachers' pay for each day they participate in a strike.

The announcement notes that in Colorado, the state funds education at an average of $2,500 per student less than the national average, and is even lower in northeastern plains school districts.

You have likely heard many Colorado school districts are cancelling or closing on April 27 because of high levels of teacher and staff absences for Friday's state school funding rally at the Capital.

"I started thinking about the bill when I saw the news about teacher strikes in West Virginia", GOP Sen.

"I'm not sure it has 100 percent support in the Republican caucus", Grantham said. It would also allow a school district the ability to fire a teacher if they violate a court order prohibiting a strike. They said the goal of wearing red was to try to protect PERA and give educator a voice on the lack of school funding.

As part of the bill, a public school employer would be authorized to seek an injunction from a district court if a strike were to happen, or if there was imminent threat of a strike in violation of the proposed bill. Any educator who doesn't comply would be in contempt and therefore face fines or up to six months in jail, or both.

Gardner says the bill is not meant to prevent teachers from demonstrating. For example, the Pueblo union has informed state regulators of their intent to strike, and the state Department of Labor and Employment can intervene to try to broker an agreement.

The decision of whether to recommend a takeover is in the hands of interim Education Commissioner Wayne Lewis, who was appointed to the position last week after the former head of Kentucky's public schools, Stephen Pruitt, resigned under pressure from a newly reconstituted state education board. "Most of the teachers just want to be heard".

The Colorado Education Association, the state teacher union responsible for organizing the walkouts, has called for educators to meet at Colorado's State Capitol Building to call on legislators to support teachers and their interests.

"These aren't new discussions", said Senate President Pro Tem Jerry Sonnenberg, R-Sterling.

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