[UPDATED with John and Ken Counterprotest:] Pissed-Off Teachers, Parents, Principals, School Staffers and Trustees Protest

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UPDATE, MAY 12, 1:48 P.M.: Our original post previewing what became a large protest by Orange County parents, teachers, administrators, education professionals and school-board members at Assemblyman Chris Norby's Fullerton office Monday. That post also mentioned a rally at 4 p.m. today by North County educators.

Indeed, it's bringing out the hosts of one of Southern California's most-popular news radio programs--although probably not in the way the teachers would like.


KFI's John and Ken Show plans to broadcast live from downtown Fullerton beginning at 3 this afternoon. The exact site: Harbor Boulevard between Chapman and Commonwealth--or the same location as the North Orange County United Teachers Revenue Extensions & Tax Fairness Day Rally.

Hosts John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou vow on their site to "take on the teachers and their union goons!"

"They wear red; we wear black!" continue the bombastic anti-tax crusaders. "These teachers are running a deceitful campaign. We will not support tax hikes!"

Disneyland may not be the only North County site with fireworks today.

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Assemblyman Chris Norby (R-Fullerton)
ORIGINAL POST, MAY 9, 2:35 P.M.: A coalition of Orange County parents, teachers, administrators, education professionals and school-board members representing students from kindergarten through university descends on Assemblyman Chris Norby's Fullerton office at 4 p.m. today in a bid to protect education funding from the state-budget ax.

This is part of the California Teachers Association (CTA)-led "State of Emergency" campaign, which has other events planned throughout the region and state this week.

For the coalition's sake, it'd better hope hot-headed Norby is in a mood to receive it--if he's even there.

"As a parent, as someone who is a former teacher, as someone who is supposed to be very active and aware of what is going on in his district, he, if anyone, should understand how important it is to fund our schools,"  Saddleback Valley Unified School District board president Suzie Swartz tells KPCC of Norby.

The Fullerton Republican's district office is at 1400 N. Harbor Blvd., Fullerton.

The coalition is calling on Sacramento lawmakers to deliver the same amount of money to public schools as last year and to extend sales, income and vehicle taxes that can help to pay for public education.

Other scheduled "State of Emergency" events this week include:

  • "Grade-ins" at Brea Mall and Westminster Mall from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, when North County teachers display to the public duties such as grading papers and preparing lesson plans that are done after their workdays are supposed to end.

  • Leafleting by members of the Teachers Association of Long Beach, where 1,100 Long Beach Unified School District educators have received pink slips, in neighborhoods after school Tuesday.

  • The North Orange County United Teachers Revenue Extensions & Tax Fairness Day Rally has members of the Fullerton Secondary Teachers Association, Fullerton Elementary Teachers Association, Buena Park Teachers Association, Brea Olinda Teachers Association and La Habra Education Association wearing red and waving banners along Harbor Boulevard between Chapman and Commonwealth beginning at 4 p.m. Thursday, May 12.

For more information, visit castateofemergency.com.

Meanwhile, the leader of the Education Action Group blasts the CTA's "State of Emergency" campaign for highlighting what he called unionized teachers' "me-first mentality."

"If California's teachers unions were serious about taking action, they should concentrate their efforts on finding ways to reduce or eliminate some of the more expensive perks in school-employee contracts that have been bleeding the state's schools to death for years," Kyle Olson, the founder and CEO of the Muskegon, Michigan-based lobby, says in a statement issued Friday.

"Residents have realized that the union's 'me first' mentality is a major reason why cuts to education are now necessary," Olson continued. "The union-organized 'Week of Action' to protest the painful but necessary move only confirms that the teachers unions' real motivation has little to do with educating the state's youth."

He accused state union officials of having "shrugged their shoulders when school districts across the state were forced to lay off smart, young educators so their more senior colleagues could receive the expensive union perks guaranteed in school-employee contracts."

His group faults the CTA and its member associations for failing to negotiate concessions that could have public schools money and prevented many of the cuts now facing California educators.


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