To: [Activist Name]
Subject: Press Release: Teacher Survey Results on In-Person Reopening
From: Cincinnati Federation of Teachers/CFOP
Reply To: firstname.lastname@example.org
Survey Says: Low Teacher Confidence in CPS Plan to Return to In-Person Instruction; High Support for Teachers to Fight for Delay Until Vaccinated
For Immediate Release
Contact: President Julie Sellers, Cincinnati Federation of Teachers Email: email@example.com Phone: (513) 961-2272
The Cincinnati Federation of Teachers membership is extremely concerned that the communications from the District and Board of Education are misleading about how our membership feels about returning to in-person instruction before being immunized against the deadly COVID-19 virus.
While we all long for the day when we can all be together with our students safely in our Cincinnati Public Schools, it is important to have an honest conversation about the realities CPS employees face by being asked to return in person. We have heard hundreds of personal stories sharing legitimate health concerns as employees are forced to make the anguishing decision to return without having been vaccinated. Our survey results show nearly half of the respondents to the survey – hundreds – are considering seeking sick leave and health accommodations. This is the exact reason the Board decided to go remote back in March. How do they think staffing issues will be any different this time? If anything, it will be worse.
It is unfortunate the Board of Education has limited our teachers’ participation in public comment. It is even worse to hear so many of our members expressing fears of retaliation for speaking up about conditions in their classrooms amid a public health crisis.
CFT issued a survey to all members, and in less than 24 hours we received nearly two thousand responses– 2/3rds of our membership, showing nearly 90% support our fight to delay the start of the in-person phase-in until March 1st, or until all employees receive both shots for full immunization. Nearly 78% do not feel comfortable returning to in-person instruction before receiving full immunization.
We have filed a grievance and are exploring any and all legal avenues to reverse the Board of Education’s irresponsible decision to ignore their own guidelines, and the guidelines of health experts as our county continues to be in the most hazardous level of community spread of the COVID virus.
The Cincinnati Federation of Teachers is a union of professionals who champions the social and economic well-being of our members, Cincinnati’s children, families, working people and communities. We are committed to advancing these principles through community engagement, organizing, collective bargaining and political activism and especially through our members’ work.