“MAEA unanimously passed a strike authorization vote which would empower the negotiations team to call a strike."

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

MARS, Pa. (KDKA) – On Monday, the Mars Area Education Association passed a strike authorization vote, granting its negotiation team the ability to call for a work stoppage by giving 48 hours notice to the Mars Area School District.

“MAEA unanimously passed a strike authorization vote which would empower the negotiations team to call a strike,” said Dave Goodworth, the Mars Area Education Association’s chief negotiator. “The team is disappointed in the lack of good faith bargaining by the district.”

According to MAEA, they have made monthly requests to meet with the district to negotiate a new contract, but they say the district canceled the two most recent meetings.

MAEA says that the school district has declined to make any proposals since the beginning of 2020.

“MAEA is seeking better working conditions and compensation that would raise our salary similar to the teachers of Moniteau, Karns City, and Slippery Rock School Districts,” said Joe Graff, MAEA president. “The district did not need to raise taxes in order to recently acquire soccer fields from the Mars Home for Youth. Our proposed raises would cost the district less than the cost of the fields.”

Teachers in MAEA claim they are the sixth-lowest paid teachers of the eight schools in Butler County.