Teachers stage ‘sick out’ in EBR Schools; district reports no significant increase in teacher absences

A total of 760 teachers and staff members were absent from East Baton Rouge Parish Schools on Wednesday, Jan. 12.
Published: Jan. 12, 2022 at 6:34 PM CST
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - A total of 760 teachers and staff members were absent from East Baton Rouge Parish Schools on Wednesday, Jan. 12.

It was the day members of the Louisiana Association of Educators (LAE) were planning to call out sick in protest of what they have called unsafe work conditions due to the omicron variant of COVID.

According to EBR Schools, the number of absences is on par with the average number of absences it has seen over the last seven days, which it added can be attributed to the current COVID and seasonal flu surge.

The Louisiana Association of Educators reported its roughly 350 members in Baton Rouge all said they would be participating in the “sick out.”

According to EBR Schools, no schools were forced to close because of the “sick out.”

The teachers are demanding Superintendent Dr. Sito Narcisse do more to protect his teachers and students from COVID. Specifically, the union asked for schools to return to a virtual format until cases are reduced.

“Actually, if the district would do what they say they are doing, and even pretended that they care, I hate to say it that way, but pretended they actually care about our students for real, our teachers, our staff, our administrators, our student’s families, if they were true to what they were saying we would feel safe,” said Rhonda Matthews, a science teacher at McKinley High School.

Narcisse said Tuesday that going virtual was not the best option.

“Not having a day in school is not the answer to that,” he stated.

RELATED: EBR teachers plan sick-out over COVID concerns, staff shortages

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