PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — There’s going to be a teachers’ strike on Friday in Pittsburgh Public Schools, if the union and district can’t reach an agreement before then.
The last time there was a teacher’s strike in the city of Pittsburgh was 40 years ago.
The union gave a 96-hour warning Monday. They say it was out of respect for parents who will have to make other plans.
There was a parent’s night in East Liberty on Monday to talk about the SATs, but outside, the talk was about the possibility of a teachers’ strike.
“The board is saying everything else has been answered except for that one thing. Teachers are saying something else. Who are we supposed to believe?” asked Judy Long, a grandmother in the district.
Meghan Schiller’s Report:
It’s true that the district and teachers union are telling two different stories about where things stand.
“We have one point of contention right now, and it’s principals scheduling,” said Superintendent Dr. Anthony Hamlet. “The principals having the ability to make the best decisions for children in the building when it comes scheduling teachers.”
However, Nina Esposito-Visgitis, the president of the Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers, says: “We disagree with that. We think that is misinformation to the public. We do not have a tentative agreement on a number of issues.”
She continued: “We do not have sign off on healthcare. We do not have sign off on early child care. We do not have sign off on athletic coaches.”
Two grandmothers outside the meeting in East Liberty tell KDKA’s David Highfield that they tend believe the teachers more.
“I believe the teachers wouldn’t just say any old thing, because they would want their jobs and want to get paid and keep their mortgage and their cars up,” Mildred Reed.
Student Chase Barney says he’s heard the frustration of at least one of his teachers.
“She’s always talking about how the board gives them too many tests, and they don’t mean anything. So she kind of wants to go on strike,” he said.
Negotiators for both sides are scheduled to meet again Tuesday.