To the Editor,

I applaud the teachers and administrators who recently attended the Red for Ed Day in Indianapolis. The large number of people attending showed the high level of support that exists forbetter treatment of public school teachers and better outcomes for public school students. As a retired teacher, I felt a sense of pride in Indiana teachers standing up for themselves and their students.

The Red for Ed rally was a great show of solidarity, but in the end, the teachers were rebuffed. Governor Holcomb conveniently left town for the day, and Speaker Bosma, though he wore a red tie, made no new promises. Apparently, both feel confident they have the support of the voters.

Teachers have made a difference at the voting booth in the past, as recently as 2012. That year, Indiana teachers were laser-focused on getting rid of Tony Bennett, the Republican State Superintendent, a man overtly hostile to public education. Because teachers across the state organized, they were able to send Mr. Bennett packing and handed the office to Democrat Glenda Ritz. Ms.Ritz worked hard to further the interests of public schools and teachers. However, she was undercut by a Republican governor and lawmakers who downsized her responsibilities. Eventually, they entirely cut the voters out of the picture by legislating the superintendent's position into one appointed by the governor. While the story ended badly, it also showed that teachers, by encouraging their friends and families to vote for public education, can make a difference.

In my opinion, rallies are effective in building enthusiasm, but real change takes mobilizing the votes to oust problem politicians, and in this case, the problem politicians are the Republicans.

Monica Yane
Oldenburg, IN