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ACORN members call teacher vacancies ‘scary’

This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.

With signs declaring "Edison schools are scary," about twenty ACORN members marched their way to Edison’s Philadelphia headquarters in Stoddart-Fleisher Middle School on Halloween, demanding an accurate list of teacher vacancies in schools located in neighborhoods with active ACORN chapters.

Education Chair Victoria Yarn said that her daughter, a seventh grade student at Edison-managed Barratt Middle School, had had four reading teachers in the first seven weeks of school. Yarn said she had called Edison officials repeatedly with no response.

Protestors also expressed concern that students’ safety had been endangered because of what they called a "frightening rate" of teacher turnover at Edison-managed schools.

"All we want…is to be guaranteed that our children are being properly taught and that the’re safe," Yarn told Richard Barth, Edison’s senior vice president for Philadelphia, in a phone call that took place during the protest.

Barth agreed to a meeting with ACORN members the following week to discuss their concerns and to provide them with an updated list of teacher vacancies at Edison-managed schools.

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