SUHSD Teachers Deal with Distance Teaching and Possible Job Loss

NBC 7's education reporter Rory Devine facetime with the president of the teachers union, Julie Walker

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As teachers throughout the country deal with distance learning, some teachers in the Sweetwater Union High School District are also dealing with the possibility of being laid off.

The district, notorious for its budget woes, gave pink slips to more than 240 teachers, counselors and administrators in March. Now, some could be getting final notices as soon as this week. Others who are appealing the layoffs would get theirs in June.

Trevor Angood has been teaching for four years at Eastlake High School. He is a teacher-librarian this year; prior to that, he taught social studies for three years. He graduated from Eastlake High and thought he would spend the rest of his career there. 

This is my dream job. I've broken down many times because I love teaching.

Trevor Angood, Teacher-Librarian at Eastlake High School

The district again finds itself in debt, this year to the tune of $30 million. The district has made cuts to transportation, athletics, learning centers; it has not filled vacant positions, and it offered teachers early retirement.

“We’ve been in a challenging place for a while now,” said district spokesperson Manny Rubio, acknowledging for years the district has been overstaffed, given its declining enrollment.

President of the Sweetwater Education Association Julie Walked said, “It is difficult for everyone, these are our colleagues, these are people we have worked with for four or five years who contribute a lot of tour students.” 

Unless something happens in bargaining, the teachers will lose their jobs.

Julie Walker, Sweetwater Education Association President

The district and the teachers union will be at the bargaining table Thursday.

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