Ann Arbor teachers, school board trustee join right to work protest in Lansing
A group of teachers from the Ann Arbor Education Association and at least one school board member, Susan Baskett, were among the 10,000-plus people in Lansing Tuesday, protesting the passage of Right to Work legislation.
According to a Facebook event posting, about two dozen Ann Arbor teachers’ union members and supporters departed from the AAEA office at 7:30 a.m. to caravan to Lansing, joining other union representation from around the state.
Baskett said in a text message to AnnArbor.com that Trevor Staples, a third grade Burns Park Elementary School teacher, addressed the crowd about 12:30 p.m.
He spoke around the same time as Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero and the Rev. Jesse Jackson.
The district could not confirm how many Ann Arbor Public Schools teachers may have taken personal days to leave the classroom to protest in Lansing. However, spokeswoman Liz Margolis said the district’s human resource staff crunched some numbers and it does not appear there were any more teachers absent Tuesday than on a typical school day.
“We did’t see any unusual blips,” she said. “Ann Arbor teachers put the kids first.”
Emma Jackson, communications director for the Washtenaw Intermediate School District, echoed Margolis' statement, saying substitute teacher requests across the county appeared normal. “No spikes,” Jackson said.
The WISD handles the coordination of substitute teachers for most of the county.
Taylor School District and Warren Consolidated Schools, both in southeast Michigan, canceled classes today due to the high number of teachers planning to attend the protest.
- Read the MLive article about the canceled classes.