Teacher wage protest creates divide between district


Olivia Mendoza

Sofia Salas (12) holds up her phone in support of the current teacher strike during the walkout on Tuesday, Sept. 27th. Her phone reads, “Pay Teachers More.”

Olivia Mendoza, News Editor

Just as students expect to return to school for a normal academic year after overcoming the constant battle with COVID-19, a new challenge sets forth not only for students, but teachers and faculty as well. 

At the beginning of the school year, teachers working within the Chino Valley Unified School District learned that they would be returning to their classrooms without a contract. 

During the most recent Board Meeting on September 15th, teachers from Ayala continued to publicly express their frustration with members of the Board. 

“I love it when I’m in the classroom with my students, but I’ve fallen out of love with Chino Valley Unified School District,” English teacher Elaine Maxwell said.  “It [is] very difficult to love the district. The continued disrespect for all staff members, most importantly teachers and those that work together to keep our students safe and educated [is] degrading… and embarrassing.” 

Over the past few weeks at Ayala, and throughout the CVUSD, teachers have been wearing black to symbolize the death of respect that the District has shown them in regards to a viable contract that both parties can agree upon. 

On Tuesday, September 27th, high schools within the district participated in a school-wide walkout to support teachers in hopes of increasing their overall wages. 

As students filled the lunch tables to rally behind their teachers, the teachers themselves were not present. Rumor quickly spread saying that if teachers were to be found outside of their classrooms during this protest, they would be fired. 

In response to the lack of a fair agreement, teachers have also cancelled all forms of outside hours for their students. Available assistance that was once provided before school, after school, or during lunch is now gone, although it was heavily relied upon.  

As teachers continue to protest in solidarity with their fellow faculty members, many teachers around campus can also be seen wearing pins that say, “You can’t put students first if you put teachers last.” 

While this is still a progressing story, teachers that spoke at the meeting continued to threaten Board members that if their pay is not raised, they will be forced to move to other districts that provide a more competitive wage with additional benefits that the CVUSD is currently not presenting their staff with.