Teachers at Mt. Adams District are ready to go on strike
WHITE SWAN, Wash. -- Teachers at the Mt. Adams School District say they are ready to go on strike if they don’t get a fair job contract.
Several teachers spoke out during a school district community meeting Wednesday about wanting a better contract than what the district is offering them.
Shelly Craig is a Mt. Adams school district Alumna and has been a high school Special Ed teacher there for 15 years, but she says she is ready to leave if she doesn’t get a fair contract.
“We’ve got to do something to make a stand and let our community and leaders know that we want what’s fair,” said Craig.
According to Superintendent Curt Guaglianone, the district is trying to build a new school so they have been able to get state funding, bonds and will be getting an additional allocation of money of $14.2 million.
Dr. Guaglianone said the administrative staff as well as himself have all been able to receive an income increase this year, and the district is also offering the teachers an increase but they have not been able to come to an agreement with them.
Mt. Adams Education Association Representative and Teacher Kristin Trease says the administrative staff has received a 3.77 percent increase that is ongoing on their salary schedule.
Trease says the teachers are being offered a 7.5 percent increase but only 1.2 percent will be ongoing.
She says if they agree to this offer, the rest of the increase will end when the following year comes, which means they will have to negotiate their contract all over again next year.
“We want to be here. This is where we want to work, but respect goes a long way and right now we are not feeling respected nor are we feeling taken care of,” said Trease.
Dr. Guaglianone said he values the teachers at the district and appreciates their hard work.
He also said their decisions are based on student success and they want to make sure the students are receiving the resources they need.
The teachers all held signs and said they are ready to go on strike if they are not offered a different contract.
The teachers have now been working without a contract for 155 days, since a contract agreement has not been reached.