NORTH VERSAILLES (KDKA) – Teachers in the East Allegheny School District are on the picket lines for the second day in a row.
They walked off the job on Tuesday on what was supposed to be the first day of school.
“It’s really upsetting because everyone wants to get back in school. It’s the best thing for us and I feel like the board needs to start cooperating,” Ninth grade student Jessica Stevenson said.
Things got heated at a school board meeting Tuesday night.
“Unlike common practice in most school districts on strike, why our seniors aren’t having classes under administrators so they can graduate on time,” parent and Logan Middle School PTO President Dawn Richardson-Frank said.
“We don’t have as many administrators to teach kids,” Superintendent Roger D’Emidio said.
D’Emidio said if the strike continues, seniors may not graduate on time.
The dispute is mainly over teachers’ salaries.
However, residents in the community don’t want to see their taxes go up. D’Emidio said that’s his concern if the school board goes along with what the teachers want.
Information on the district’s website from the 2013-14 school year show that a teacher with 16 or more years of experience can make over $93,000 a year.
“Unfortunately, now that’s 18-20 years that they will reach the top salary. And a teacher with a Master’s degree can earn up to $93,000,” East Allegheny Education Association President Cheryl Ihnat said.
By law, teachers can strike up to 16 days before they must return to school.