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A strike looms three days before the first day of school in Seattle

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SEATTLE – The possibility of a strike was still looming on Saturday with just three days left before Seattle students are supposed to head back to school.

The Seattle Education Association and the district started negotiating at noon on Saturday.

They brought in a negotiator from a state agency hoping it would help solve the issues.

Meanwhile outside a Seattle Target, the back to school frenzy was obvious.

“They wanted us to get a calculator this year,” said parent J.J Ball.

But what’s not adding up for some parents is what’s happening behind closed doors.

“I don’t hear a lot coming out of the negotiations,” said Ball.

We want to go to school on time but we need to get a fair agreement,” said Seattle Education Association President Jonathan Knapp.

The teachers union is keeping quiet on how negotiations are going. But the teachers they represent are making a lot of noise by picketing in the streets of Seattle.

Several sticking points include pay raises and how test scores are used to evaluate teachers

seattle teacher picket“What they are doing is asking more and more of our teachers who are overworked,” said parent Carrie James.

Some parents say they want teachers to get their way but just without a strike.

“It’s really inconvenient not to know what is going on,” said Ball.

“It’s extremely frustrating, we lose income it puts our children in jeopardy because they don’t have proper care, it’s crazy,” said James.

James, a single mother, as of Saturday had no idea where to take her son if Seattle schools fail to start on Wednesday.

“It’s stressful,” said James.

But some parents were still checking off back to school items just in case.

“Pens, sharpies and tape,” said Ball.

If the two sides cannot come to an agreement by Tuesday night several things could happen. Teachers could work without a contract or strike.

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1 Comment

  • a seattle teacher

    This report wasn't quite accurate. The Seattle Teachers are debating about elementary teachers getting an extra half hour daily added to the day, workload issues for psychs, therapists and other office workers… Where were those things in your reporting???