The Tuesday after Labor Day school began without a hitch in University Place.
Bus riders figured out their stops, lunches were bought in the cafeteria, and homework assigments began to roll out. Just as fall seemed to put us all on the school schedule, our neighbors in Tacoma school district face a school stoppage.
This newly voted teacher strike began Tuesday morning. They are taking it to the judge this afternoon to determine if the strike is against the law and demanding the teachers go back to work.
I thought we could consider this issue as Mom's Talk this week.
The teachers want fair pay, small class sizes and to limit the abilities of reassignments from principals. They claim they have been at the bargaining table every day since school started. The union felt placed in the corner and felt this strike was the only option left to try to get the attention of the district.
The district claims that all employees are still under contract and in violation of it. It also says that state law prohibits the union from striking. It states that the students who need free lunch, special needs and other district employees - bus drivers, cafeteria workers, etc. - are the real losers in a work stoppage. The district feels it has offered a fare contract and desire the teachers to return to work.
What are your thoughts?
Do you understand the teachers' needs?
Are the students really the ones caught in the middle?
Why couldn't the district and teachers union work this out over the summer when they all knew the Aug. 31 contract date?
What would you do if we faced a school stoppage in UP? How much would it disrupt your family schedule?
Would you support the teachers and enjoy an extra week off (maybe not since the weather seems to have turned a corner).
Does this neighboring teacher strike affect us in UP? Several students attend the SODA school of the Arts from our district.
We are lucky to have a strong school district, involved parents, and willing teachers to help our students begin school again this fall to build their educational foundation.