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Dozens Of PPS Teachers Could Be Furloughed Soon

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) - Dozens of Pittsburgh Public School teachers could be furloughed in just a few weeks. The district said declining enrollment played a factor in the decision.

According to Pittsburgh Public, 33 teachers and one non-professional are impacted. The furloughs would start on Aug. 18, less than two weeks from now.

The district notified the 34 people by the first of the month. The Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers said this has some feeling nervous.

"They have families, homes, mortgages, rents and things to pay," Union Parliamentarian and Staff Representative Harold Grant said.

He said the notices went to teachers who started working in the district within the past couple of years.

"This is something that we would never want for anyone," Grant said.

He said there are ongoing discussions with the district to make sure no one is furloughed.

"Working through the 18th, through the holiday. Just whatever we need to do to try to get as many folks back as we can with the goal of getting everyone back 100 percent," Grant said over Zoom.

His thought is a decline in enrollment would create a better teacher-to-student ratio.

"That's what we always want, smaller class sizes, so kids can have that individual attention with their teachers," Grant told KDKA.

In a statement to KDKA Pittsburgh Public says: "It is anticipated that the number will decrease based on attrition and the need to meet the unique needs of students during the pandemic."

"I believe children can get a first-class education because of the teachers in Pittsburgh Public Schools," Grant said.

If anyone is furloughed, both unemployed and CHIP are available, according to Grant.

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