We Asked These Triangle Teachers Why They’re Protesting. Their Answers May Surprise You. | News Feature | Indy Week
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We Asked These Triangle Teachers Why They’re Protesting. Their Answers May Surprise You. 

They work second jobs. They buy their kids’ school supplies. They’re losing support staff. They don’t have enough pencils. Nine local teachers share their stories.


click to enlarge Carla Tavares - PHOTO BY CAITLIN PENNA
  • Photo by Caitlin Penna
  • Carla Tavares

Carla Tavares is a third-grade teacher at Jones Dairy Elementary in Wake Forest. She came to North Carolina eleven years ago from Rhode Island, where she also taught.

"We work more than forty hours a week. We work all night, all weekend. I substitute [during breaks] and I teach reading camp just to make ends meet. As a single parent, part of this is about being able to sustain my household. Being able to send my children to college. But I chose this profession because I feel like it's a calling, and it's part of my responsibility to advocate for the things that I believe are not right. We need our support staff, teacher assistants, not just cutting positions and expecting teachers to do more with less. I know what it's like to be in a classroom where you don't have what you need. I have spent a lot of money on books to accommodate my own needs in my classroom.

"For me personally, it's about the kids, and I would like to be able to feel like I'm respected as a professional. We don't get treated as professionals. If you want your teachers to be happy, you want your schools to have a working community, and there are some things that go with the territory. I took a huge pay cut to come here. And to feel like I'm just within the last couple years making what I was making eleven years ago is pretty pathetic."<




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