Columbus Strike: Teachers in Ohio’s Largest School District Vote to Strike Just Before School Starts



CNN

Teachers in Ohio’s largest school district voted on Sunday to go on strike, just days before school was due to start, the teachers’ union said.

The Columbus Education Association union — which represents more than 4,000 teachers, nurses and other education professionals in the Columbus City Schools district — said it will be the first strike in decades.

“94% of Columbus Education Association (CEA) members voted to reject the Council’s latest, best and final offer and to strike for the first time since 1975,” the union said in a statement. Twitter. “CEA is committed to negotiating for the safe and welcoming, well-maintained and fully equipped public schools Columbus students deserve.”

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The union said the disagreement has to do with learning conditions, including class size and functional heating and air conditioning in classrooms, according to the Columbus Education Association’s intention to strike.

The Columbus Board of Education called the vote “disappointing.”

“Tonight’s vote by the Columbus Education Association (CEA) is incredibly disappointing. We are saddened by the unfortunate situation our families, our community and, most importantly, our children are now facing,” the board said in a statement.

Columbus City Schools serves 47,000 students, according to the district.

Despite the strike, the school year is still scheduled to begin Wednesday, but according to the school district’s website, classes will be online and led by substitutions.

The district says its own administrators may also be providing online classes as the strike continues. But since teachers make up the bulk of the district’s coaching staff, sports activities may be moved or canceled, according to the website.

The Columbus City Schools strike isn’t the only one happening this week.

Just a day before the Ohio vote, a union representing about 2,000 employees of the Philadelphia school district voted to approve a strike — just over a week before school starts.

The Philadelphia union 32BJ SEIU is calling for higher wages and adequate training programs.


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