On November 19, Tuesday, close to 15,000 school teachers in the state of Indiana, USA, marched to the state capitol on the ‘Red for Ed Action Day,’ with the central demand of an increase in wages. The call for the march was given by the Indiana State Teachers Association and AFT Indiana.
According to reports, 147 school districts canceled classes on Tuesday for the Red for Ed Action Day.
Teachers in the state are demanding a rise in their salaries, which average around USD 50,000, but can be as low as USD 30,000 for new hires. The national average stands at USD 60,000.
The Indiana State Teachers Association (ISTA) said that the Red For Ed Action Day will go down in history as a significant turning point for public education in Indiana, as it saw educators, parents and community members rallying together for greater investments in public education and more respect for educators.
The ISTA has also organized several other campaigns towards the American Education Week (November 18 – 22), including a ‘Write to your legislator’ drive on November 18, to urge authorities to take action on the teachers demands. The ‘day for Education Support Professionals (ESP)’ was organized on November 20, a community classroom with legislators, community leaders and parents took place on November 21, and a social media campaign for #RedForEd was called on November 22.
Over the past year, teachers in a number of US states have gone on strike, seeking better pay, more funds for education and better amenities at schools. Earlier in March as well, the Indiana teachers had marched in the state capital Indianapolis demanding fair wages.