Educators around the nation are shocked at the mass firing of 88 faculty members at a struggling high school in Rhode Island. The Central Falls High School firings, recommended by the State Education Commissioner, school superintendent and school board this week, were applauded by U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan as a model turnaround plan under new federal requirements for school reform. Union leaders called the unprecedented firings drastic and unnecessary, citing recent improvement in tests scores and willingness by the union to collaborate on a reform plan.
Rhode Island union leaders are urging colleagues to go to a new Web site to learn more about the struggle and sign a petition in support of the educators. Go to www.centralfallskidsdeservebetter.com to take action - and follow their tweets at twitter.com/SaveCFHigh.
A statement by the American Federation of Teachers is posted at aft.org.
Update: The AFT today released a joint statement by Randi Weingarten, President of American Federation of Teachers; Marcia Reback, President of Rhode Island Federation of Teachers and Health Professionals and Jane Sessums, President of Central Falls Teachers Union.