Education, Features, Finance, National

Oakland School Board Postpones Meeting As Striking Teachers Picket

March 5, 2019

By Steve Wishnia and Neal Tepel

OAKLAND, Calif.—Claiming it feared for its safety as hundreds of striking teachers and supporters picketed outside, the Oakland school board cancelled its meeting Feb. 27. The board had been scheduled to vote on whether to cut $21.75 million from the district’s budget for the 2019-20 school year, possibly causing the layoff of more than 100 employees. It said the teachers’ union “prevented the meeting from happening by directing members to picket ‘until meeting cancelled.’” The Oakland Education Association had asked the school board to postpone the meeting and not cross its picket line. “Do these look like threatening people?” OEA vice president Chaz Garcia told the East Bay Times. “People are out here exercising their right to be on strike and picket and if somebody chooses to cross the picket line that’s their decision, we would never physically harm anyone or touch them. I think they’re more concerned about their political safety.” The strike by more than 3,000 teachers and other staff began Feb. 21. They have been seeking a raise of 12% over four years. The Oakland district said it had increased its offer to an 8% raise over three years and a 2% bonus. Read more

March 5, 2019

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