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Charlotte Amalie
Friday, May 20, 2022
HomeNewsArchivesTURNBULL EYES DECLARING EDUCATION EMERGENCY

TURNBULL EYES DECLARING EDUCATION EMERGENCY

After a day of meetings with local and national teachers union leaders, Gov. Charles Turnbull said Friday he is prepared to declare a state of emergency in the Education Department, as he did last month with the Public Works Department.
But he went no further than that, and no additional information was available from Government House as to when and on what basis he might proceed from preparation into action.
The main effect of such a declaration would apparently be to enable the department to bypass certain time-consuming procedures such as putting jobs out for bid.
The two factors impelling Turnbull toward the emergency declaration are reports of a planned large exodus of teachers from the public school system at the end of the academic year and the continual deterioration in the physical condition of the schools.
At the lengthy meeting the governor had Thursday with American Federation of Teachers leaders, an emergency declaration "was one of the items on the AFT agenda," he said Friday. He said his administration hopes to dissuade teachers from leaving by paying attention to their concerns.
"We must have teachers in the classrooms when the 2000-2001 school year opens in August," he said.
"We are mandated because of this situation to take action to give teachers and education our undivided attention. . . Our children's futures are at stake," Turnbull said.
Cecil Benjamin, St. Croix Federation of Teachers president, welcomed the news that the governor is leaning towards an emergency declaration. Noting that the crisis "has existed for some time," he said the problems are being compounded by "the awful conditions and the planned departure of teachers in a couple of months."
He added, "The administration cannot continue to say education is a top priority without taking some prudent action."

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After a day of meetings with local and national teachers union leaders, Gov. Charles Turnbull said Friday he is prepared to declare a state of emergency in the Education Department, as he did last month with the Public Works Department.
But he went no further than that, and no additional information was available from Government House as to when and on what basis he might proceed from preparation into action.
The main effect of such a declaration would apparently be to enable the department to bypass certain time-consuming procedures such as putting jobs out for bid.
The two factors impelling Turnbull toward the emergency declaration are reports of a planned large exodus of teachers from the public school system at the end of the academic year and the continual deterioration in the physical condition of the schools.
At the lengthy meeting the governor had Thursday with American Federation of Teachers leaders, an emergency declaration "was one of the items on the AFT agenda," he said Friday. He said his administration hopes to dissuade teachers from leaving by paying attention to their concerns.
"We must have teachers in the classrooms when the 2000-2001 school year opens in August," he said.
"We are mandated because of this situation to take action to give teachers and education our undivided attention. . . Our children's futures are at stake," Turnbull said.
Cecil Benjamin, St. Croix Federation of Teachers president, welcomed the news that the governor is leaning towards an emergency declaration. Noting that the crisis "has existed for some time," he said the problems are being compounded by "the awful conditions and the planned departure of teachers in a couple of months."
He added, "The administration cannot continue to say education is a top priority without taking some prudent action."