Giving Compass' Take:

• Leah Rodiguez, writing for Global Citizen, discusses the importance of the LA teacher strikes in fighting for a better education for students of color and low-income families in Los Angeles. 

• How does community support help fuel the strikes? What are the roles of parents in these situations? 

• Read about the various ways you can help during teacher strikes. 

Los Angeles teachers are on strike for the first time in 30 years after failed budget negotiations, CBS reports.

More than 32,000 Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) educators walked out of school on Monday. Parents marched alongside them in downtown Los Angeles, protesting for smaller classroom sizes, higher wages, and better school conditions in the US’ second-largest school district.

The strike is expected to last at least two days, but 600,000 students are not sure when classes will resume with their regular teachers, according to CNN.

The strike is in response to a proposal that the LAUSD presented on Jan. 11 to United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA), the union representing LAUSD teachers. It offered the LAUSD school system a 6% pay increase, and only agreed to enforce a 39-student maximum class size. UTLA called the offer “woefully inadequate,” and insists the district is “hoarding” $1.86 billion in reserves that could meet the teacher’s needs.

Here are three reasons why it matters that LA teachers’ voices are heard.

  1. More Funding Could Help Students of Color Overcome Poverty 
  2.  Low-Income Parents Rely on School System for Childcare and Food 
  3. Teachers and Parents Are Fighting for Quality Education for All

When there isn’t enough government funding, teachers have to rely on their personal income to make up the difference and do their jobs effectively. In 2014, 94% of public school teachers used their own money to buy basic school supplies and food for students.

Read the full article about LA teacher strikes by Leah Rodriguez at Global Citizen