Protesting teachers demand better for students

While most students took the afternoon off from school, passionate teachers gathered at Ballard’s busiest intersection to protest budget cuts.

Waving to honking cars, many of the protesting teachers were wearing red.

“Today is a furlough day which means that we’re essentially laid off without pay today,” Judy Oerkvitz of Lawton Elementary tells us, “But when you lay off teachers without pay what you’re doing is depriving students of their education. the state has a paramount duty to sufficiently fund education at the K-12 level and we think they could be doing a much better job.”

A Loyal Heights teacher waves at a passing car

All four corners of the intersection were populated by protesting teachers demanding better for students. One sign held by an Adams Elementary counselor reads, “This furlough is stealing from children to protect the 1%. Fund education!” Others read, “We should be teaching” and “Students need me IN the classroom.”

Even kids came out to support the teachers. Some chanting, “We miss math!”

Ann Gateley of Salmon Bay School on the left and Judy Oerkvitz of Lawton on the right.


Before heading to the intersection at 15th Ave NW and NW Market Street, teachers gathered in front of their schools for a picture to send the legislature.

(Thank you Colette for the tip!)

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