Teachers fear US spending cuts backlash

Educators express concern that country's debt crisis could affect public education.



    Several hundred teachers from across the US have rallied near the White House to call for radical changes to what they see as a flawed US educational system.

    The gathering on Saturday came as US congressional leaders met to discuss ways to avert a potentially damaging debt default.

    Since the recession, spending on education has suffered as state and local governments cut costs to compensate for reduced revenue and balance their budgets.

    "It has affected education for years and years, having our allocations cut for years, decades already, and if you think about running your own household, like that, there's only so much cutting you can do," said Monica Severa, a teacher.

    Teachers are being especially hit hard in their pocketbooks, and with congress threatening major spending cuts in any debt ceiling plan, educators fear it will only get worse.

    Some teachers are demanding that the government get rid of tax breaks for big companies and devote more funding to public education.

    But even if a default is avoided, there is the danger that one of the credit agencies will downgrade the US debt.

    That will mean that state and local governments will have to pay higher interest rates to borrow money to fund their school systems. Higher interest rates could mean further cutbacks.

    Al Jazeera's Roger Wilkison reports from Washington.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    What obstacles do young women in technology have to overcome to achieve their dreams? Play this retro game to find out.

    The War in October: What Happened in 1973?

    The War in October: What Happened in 1973?

    Al Jazeera examines three weeks of war from which both Arabs and Israelis claimed to emerge victorious.