Teacher Attendance Higher Than Normal on 'Sick-Out' Day

Teachers absenteeism 13 percent below normal level

By Frank Heinz
|  Wednesday, Feb 29, 2012  |  Updated 10:44 AM CDT
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DISD 'Sick Out' an Apparent Failure

West Rock

A smaller than normal number of teachers have called in sick on Feb. 29, the day a protest hoped to have one-third of DISD teachers skip work.

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The call by a teacher in the Dallas Independent School District for fellow teachers to call in sick on Feb. 29 has apparently failed.

According to the DISD, the number of teacher sick calls on Leap Day is 13 percent below normal.

The anonymous teacher who organized the protest had hoped one-third of DISDs teachers would take part in the protest and call in sick.

The sick-out was to protest the district expanding teacher work days by 45 minutes without adding additional pay.

"The teachers of DISD feel excluded from the process and marginalized by recent board decisions.  Many have great ideas as to how the district can improve, but are afraid to speak out," the teacher said in a statement released to the media. "I hope the call for a sick-out is enough to get the message across and for the board to take action," the anonymous teacher wrote in a blog.

A spokesperson for the DISD said Wednesday, "The Dallas Independent School District honor ours teachers for their continued dedication to Dallas students every single day. If you see one of our teachers today, thank them for what they do."

The teachers union didn't condone or condemn the protest.  Texas state law prohibits employees from participating in strikes or organized work stoppages against school districts.

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