Two More Washington School Districts Out on Strike

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Sean Robinson and Allison Needles report on 2 more Washington state strikes in the Tacoma News Tribune online.

Teachers in Tacoma and Puyallup voted Tuesday evening to strike, delaying the start of school for about 52,000 South Sound students.

Votes by teacher unions in the two districts passed by 97 percent and 98 percent, respectively. Puyallup teachers will hit the streets Wednesday. Tacoma teachers will break out their picket signs Thursday.

After a boisterous union membership meeting at Mt. Tahoma High School, Tacoma teachers said they couldn’t accept the latest contract proposal from school district leaders.

“They’re focused on the showmanship of education, and we’re focused on what really matters.”

In both districts, salaries represent the heart of the dispute.

How long will the strikes last? In Tacoma, Morton, the union president, wasn’t sure.

“This could very well be a long haul,” she said. “Tacoma and Puyallup seem to be taking plays out of the same book right now.”