(SANTA FE) -- NEA-New Mexico is preparing to release a member survey from over 3,000 educators across the state regarding expanded in-person learning. The survey indicates that over 75% of members consider that COVID-19 continues to pose a “risk” or “high risk” to their health and life. A majority of our members are “worried” or “very worried” that district’s will bring staff back in-person prior to them being vaccinated. 56% of respondents had students who had been infected with COVID-19. Over one out of five respondents said they were “never provided” PPE while working under a hybrid model or when working at school so far in the pandemic. About 15% of respondents say they rarely or never were able to maintain social distancing guidelines working hybrid or in-person at school so far. NEA-New Mexico President Mary Parr-Sánchez provided the following statement:
“NEA-New Mexico demands that districts partner with educators and parents in reopening.
In places where districts are considering expanding in-person learning, districts must collaborate with educators to agree on a reopening plan, which should include educator vaccinations.”
“NEA-New Mexico echoes Santa Fe Superintendent Veronica Garcia’s statement Sunday in the Santa Fe New Mexican, where she wrote,“...because New Mexico is a collective bargaining state, the district negotiates terms and conditions of employment with our unions.
Bringing educators and staff back would require renewed negotiations...”’.
Garcia goes on to propose a voluntary hybrid model in which in-person learning is conditioned on educators who are voluntarily willing to return to in-person schooling and rigorous adherence to COVID-safe protocols, including testing vaccinations, and contact tracing.”
“NEA-New Mexico wants to clarify that the Governor’s announcement last week was not in support of an across-the-board return to in-person learning. NEA-New Mexico would not support such a decision. We support the voices of our members, some of whom are ready to return to in-person learning, with appropriate protocols. The majority of our members, however, are not willing to risk their lives and the lives of their students and the families in their community, prior to vaccinations. NEA-NM continues to advocate for vaccinations prior to in-person learning.”
- Steve Siañez, NEA-NM Communications/Government Relations Director
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