The Stand

Seattle teachers go on strike over pay, testing

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The following is from the Seattle Education Association (SEA):

UPDATE (Sept. 10, 2015) — SEA teachers remain on strike. Picket lines are united, and parent support is strong. SEA members are committed to winning a fair contract that invests in quality educators and focuses on providing the resources students need to be successful. SEA members receive a daily strike newsletter on the picket lines each morning. You can also sign up for strike updates by texting seattleea to 41411.


seattle-teachers-strike-frontSEATTLE (Sept. 9, 2015) — After the Seattle School Board failed to negotiate a tentative agreement with the SEA Bargaining Team, our team marched into the school board meeting room Tuesday night and announced that negotiations were over. After bargaining until midnight Monday and for most of the day Tuesday, it was clear that a settlement wasn’t close.

We will be on strike Wednesday morning. On Sept. 3, SEA members voted unanimously to strike if the Seattle School Board failed to negotiate a tentative contract agreement by the start of school. Picket lines are from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. every day at every school.

“Our SEA Bargaining Team demonstrated patience and near superhuman endurance over this Labor Day weekend and throughout the day today (Tuesday). In the end, the school board just never gave them enough to reach a tentative agreement,” says SEA President Jonathan Knapp.

TAKE A STAND! All union members and community supporters are invited to show their solidarity and unity by joining Seattle teachers on the picket lines at your local school.

While negotiations began in May, major unresolved issues haven’t changed:

Professional pay: We need to attract and keep caring, qualified educators in Seattle, which is one of the most expensive cities in the United States. We’ve gone six years with no state COLA and five years with no state increase in funding for educator health care.

Fair teacher and staff evaluations: Educators should be evaluated fairly and consistently, and the focus should be on providing the support all educators need to be successful.

Reasonable testing: Too much standardized testing is stealing time away from classroom learning.

Educator workload relief: Current workloads mean many students aren’t getting the help they need.

Student equity around discipline and the opportunity gap: We need to focus on equity issues in every school, not just some.

The administration’s proposal to make teachers work more for free: It is unrealistic to expect teachers to work more hours without additional pay, and the district administration has been unable to explain how their proposal would help students.

Follow SEA news and developments on social media at the SEA Facebook page or by using #SeattleEA.


Get updates on the ongoing teachers’ strike in Pasco and other teacher contract votes around Washington state on The Stand’s Daily News pages.

Short URL: https://www.thestand.org/?p=43267

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