The school year has yet to start in Seattle for public school students as city teachers extended their strike to a fourth day Monday.
Seattle Public Schools announced Sunday afternoon that class would not be in session Monday, delaying the beginning of the school year for roughly 50,000 students. The word on whether students will have their first day of school Tuesday will be announced Monday afternoon.
“Seattle Public Schools and Seattle Education Association are making progress on negotiations but have not yet reached an agreement,” the school system said in its Sunday update. “We continue to bargain and remain ready to start school as soon as an agreement is reached.”
The two sides remain at odds over the core issues of the strike — teacher pay and the ratio of school social workers to students, according to the Seattle Times.
School officials have offered pay raises of an additional 1% above the 5.5% cost-of-living increase set by state lawmakers, which is well below what the union has said it wants. The school system has also offered bonuses for certain teachers.
The union also wants each school to have one social worker for every 250 students. Seattle Public Schools rejected that proposal, but has yet to suggest a different number.
A union representative told the Seattle Times that he believes both sides are arguing in good faith, despite the school system not offering alternatives to certain proposals that the union has put forward.
• This story is based in part on wire service reports.