Still no contract deal between Tacoma schools, teachers

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by KING 5 News

NWCN.com

Posted on August 31, 2011 at 6:54 AM

Updated Wednesday, Aug 31 at 10:09 AM

TACOMA, Wash.  -- Time is winding down. School starts Thursday for Tacoma students, but teachers still don't have a new contract. Their contracts expire Wednesday. There's a last minute push to come up with some type of resolution.

Negotiators met until 1:30 a.m. Wednesday and they'll resume talks around 9:00 a.m. In the meantime, Tacoma teachers are scheduled to hold a meeting Wednesday afternoon at 4:30 p.m. at Mt. Tahoma High School to discuss the next step.

Tacoma Education Association represents more than 2,400 teachers and staff, including school nurses and secretaries. There's some 28,000 students in the Tacoma Public School District. Tacoma teachers could collectively vote whether to approve a new contract, strike or work without a contract later this afternoon.

Both sides were still trying to reach a some type of agreement before the school year starts. Major sticking points in this new three year contract: class size, salary, teacher evaluations and new teaching policies.

Union representatives say a strike would require 80 percent of it's members approval. Tacoma's school board is also expected to meet at 5:00 p.m. to discuss labor negotiations.



 

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