Wednesday, October 01, 2003

Day 30, and there will be more

The two sides met again today, only to be dismissed an hour later and told to come back Monday. It seems the district was supposed to come in with a new proposal, but didn't. Um, guys? This is the same proposal you've been bringing to the table since APRIL, and the union still isn't accepting it. The union has already said they'll negotiate if you give them something to negotiate with, but digging your heels in at this late date is just getting ridiculous!

In other developments, the union is finally going on the offensive, getting the word out as to why this strike is still going on. Not only are they mailing out a flyer to the community, they also bought a full page ad in the Everett Herald, and are passing the flyers out in person as well starting today or tomorrow. But the big development seems to be Ken Shram's commentary on KOMO last night (you can read the text of it here). He's been doing this sort of commentary for a long time, and can often be a bit brusque, but he generally knows what he's talking about. He basically told the district off for "negotiating" through manipulating public opinion, and that that is not how schools are supposed to work. Well, I gather it had a bit of a domino effect, because not only KOMO, but also KING and KCPQ, at least from what I hear, are covering the strike again, with a more pro-teacher slant. I did see KING up at the high school today interviewing the union president, so we'll see if the general tide might be turning.

One more item to add: Monday, the next day that negotiations are supposed to start, will be day 35 of this strike. The longest teacher strike in Washington state history was 37 days. Unless the district sees the handwriting on the wall over the weekend, I suspect we'll break that record. What a way to start my new teaching career...

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