Teachers Vow to Fight for Jobs

Across San Diego teachers are fighting for their jobs. Some are holding meetings. Others are holding rallies. Many are wearing pink in a show of solidarity.

At Castle Park High School in Chula Vista Friday, teachers and their supporters held a rally in front of the school.

More than 100 teachers were notified they could face layoffs in the Sweetwater Union High School District.

"We're here to save our teachers because these kids deserve a quality education," said Nikki Eddy, a teacher at Castle Park.

Standing with them were some students.  "Adults tend to think that kids are very apathetic and they care! This is an indication they care what happens to them in the classroom,” said Kate Trongale one of the teachers who received a pink slip this week. “They care as much as we do."

It's a scene being played out in districts all across the county.

At the Escondido Union School District meeting Thursday night, teachers made their plea to board members.

Earlier this month, the board voted to lay off educators in about 16 positions. The district is trimming $1.6 million from its current $67.4 million budget for the 2008-9 school year and $3.1 million from its projected budget for 2009-10 following the adoption of the revised state budget, which reduced education funding by $11.6 billion.

At times the statements got emotional.

“I am single parent with two children, one in college,” one woman told the school board. “It's embarrassing to say that some months I have to skip paying a bill so I can pay for food."

Many teachers say they're worried about the layoffs and they're also worried about paying more for health benefits -- and supporting their families.

Like so many other school districts, board members in Escondido say their hands are tied by state budget cuts.

Even so, teachers aren't giving up. Many are wearing pink Friday. Pink for pink slips.  "I think if one of us is in danger, we're all in danger so we've got to stand together and wear our pink," said Eddy.

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