UPDATE: Edgerton joins list of closed schools
EDGERTON—The Edgerton School District has announced it will close schools district-wide on Thursday.
School board member Matt Towns, who is a district parent, said he got an automated call from the district at 9 p.m. tonight that said school was cancelled because of a high number of expected teacher absences Thursday.
The district is asking staff to report, but no classes will be held, Towns said.
Other school districts in the Madison area were scheduled to close Thursday because of teacher absences as teachers unions continue to flock to the capitol to protest Gov. Scott Walker’s budget relief bill.
Wisconsin Education Association Council, the state's largest teachers union, has asked citizens statewide, including teachers unions, to demonstrate against Walker's proposal, which opponents say would strip labor unions of most of their collective bargaining rights.
Towns said he’d spoken with Superintendent Dennis Pauli this afternoon, and that Pauli had voiced some concern over the number of teachers who were planning to be absent Thursday.
This morning, Pauli had told the Gazette that the district and its teachers union, which represents 132 district employees, had issued a joint solidarity statement in the face of Walker’s proposed cuts. At the time, Pauli said he was unaware of any planned staff walkouts or “sick outs," although he acknowledged the district was preparing for a possible hour-long student walkout Thursday morning at the high school.
At least 40 students had planned to protest Walker’s proposal, officials and one student organizer said earlier on Wednesday. It’s unclear whether the students still plan to demonstrate.
Towns said he didn’t have a total number of teachers expected absent, but he said officials were sure that there would not be enough teachers present to safely staff district schools.
“I trust that Dr. Pauli and his administration has made the right decision for the safety of out children,” Towns said.