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'Day Without a Woman' protest closes Chapel Hill-Carrboro schools

Posted March 8

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— Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools canceled classes on Wednesday because dozens of teachers and staff planned to take part in protests as part of the nationwide Day Without a Woman.

The protest comes on International Women's Day, which commemorates the fight for women's rights. School officials said nearly 20 percent of the staff said they wouldn't be at work today to take part in the protest.

Administrators found that more than 400 staff members, including bus drivers, would be absent. Typically, the school system has about 100 staff members who are absent.

The district serves more than 12,000 students.

"This decision was not made to support any kind of demonstration or be part of any kind of political process," said school district spokesman Jeff Nash. "We simply looked at the numbers and decided that in order to keep our children safe today it was best that we not have school."

Durham Public Schools will hold classes on Wednesday despite knowing many staff members will be taking the day off. In a statement, DPS Board Chair Mike Lee said the district supports the employees participating in the protest but can't ask parents to rearrange their plans or miss their own jobs if the school were to close.

Chapel Hill-Carrboro schools has received some criticism from the community about its decision to cancel class, but Nash said the school made the right decision to close.

"We're entrusted with 12,000 students in our community that come through our doors every morning," Nash said. "We have two jobs: one is to educate them and, more importantly, to send them home safely.

"So, when we looked at the numbers, we just didn't want to take that risk today."

Though classes are canceled, it will be an optional work day for teachers. Staff members who take part in the protest will have to use a vacation day.

37 Comments

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  • George Orwell Mar 8, 9:06 p.m.
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    Chapel hill school system closed schools so they wouldn't have to face the music. They should have kept the schools open and all teachers that skipped work for this "make believe" protect should lose tenure as well as paying for the substitute.

  • Jeff Freuler Mar 8, 6:26 p.m.
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    The school system should give them a "Day Without Pay" since they wanted to act like this

  • George Orwell Mar 8, 6:04 p.m.
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    "Wow! Who is the conspiracy theorist now"

    Got a mirror?

  • Anita Gibson Mar 8, 4:35 p.m.
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    Exactly what message is being sent? For those who say kids deserve an education, make sure they're at school every day, etc. then let's close school for what? You aren't sending any message at all. Don't like the pay? Find another career. Don't like the job? Change. You just told these kids their education isn't important yet you expect them to pay attention to you. You expect respect? You don't get it by protesting, walking out of the classroom. No message at all.

  • Jim Smith Mar 8, 3:15 p.m.
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    Wow! Who is the conspiracy theorist now "George Orwell"; as if 1984 didn't take that tack. Don't try to obfuscate the facts "George". The facts are that, if you bothered to read the article, the numbers come directly from Soros's Open Society Foundations books. Try again

  • Jim Smith Mar 8, 2:51 p.m.
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    Actually if you are going to bash someone for posting the truth you should find out if its true for yourself so you don't look unintelligent. By the way try to keep up:

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/mar/7/george-soros-gave-246-million-partners-womens-marc/

  • Jim Smith Mar 8, 1:30 p.m.
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    This is another George Soros funded failure

  • Vince DiSena Mar 8, 1:25 p.m.
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    What's better than this? 4 to 8 years without Hillary in the White House.

  • Stacy Mercier Mar 8, 1:07 p.m.
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    SCHOOL IS NOT CHILDCARE. This is the big, huge, glaring problem with how people think of our teachers. They aren't paid nearly enough, and they're treated so poorly by parents who seem to think teachers are there to babysit their kid all day.

  • Crystal Czeck Mar 8, 12:37 p.m.
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    The school system should compensate these parents that have to find alternative care for their kids, because these teachers wanted to throw a fit and go stand in the street. Nobody forced these women to become teachers. They should all lose their jobs. Plenty of fresh, new teachers just out of school ready to make a difference.

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