Posted: 12:49 PM- Hundreds of Utah teachers gathered today to share strategies, learn skills and, largely, to protest school vouchers.
National Education Association secretary-treasurer and former Utah Education Association (UEA) President Lily Eskelsen focused her opening remarks on the joy of teaching and Utah's Referendum 1 at the UEA's annual convention, which started this morning at the Salt Palace Convention Center.
"Just when you thought politicians couldn't pass something dumber than No Child Left [Behind], along came Utah politicians proving them wrong," Eskelsen told a crowd of hundreds during her opening remarks in reference to bills Utah legislators passed that would give families voucher money to send their children to private schools.
The UEA followed her opening remarks with a media event where teachers, education union leaders and educators from across the state spoke against vouchers. UEA President Kim Campbell then encouraged teachers to pull out their cell phones to call legislators who voted against vouchers in order to thank them. Hundreds of teachers pulled out their cell phones to make the calls during the event. They then marched along West Temple Street carrying green Utahns for Public Schools signs proclaiming, "STOP VOUCHERS/ Vote AGAINST Referendum 1."