Will teachers in Highland, Ill. go on strike? - KMOV.com

Will teachers in Highland, Ill. go on strike?

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(KMOV.com) – Teachers in the Highland Community School District have been without a contract since Sunday, but it remains to be seen whether they will go on strike.

Teachers held a vote in August to strike if a new contract was not agreed to by the deadline, but a teacher’s union representative said it will be dependent on which directions the negotiations go.

“That all depends on what happens this weekend during negotiations,” said Shianne Shively.

Shively also said a strike will depend on monetary and non-monetary items in their contract, which covers the current school year. Shively told News 4 the current dispute centers around language in the contract that covers teacher evaluations, layoffs, and wording that protects teachers from bullying by administrators. Shively also said teachers may walk off the job because the district is proposing a pay freeze.

“Teachers are already living on less, and a freeze would mean they would not have enough money to support their families,” Shively said.

The district has already let go 32 teachers over the past four years. Teachers and the superintendent disagree on how much money the district has. The school board is refusing to allocate more money for teachers because it says such a move could cause money problems in the future.

“The board wants to protect the financial stability of the district in the long run,” Superintendent Mike Sutton said.

The two sides are set to meet again this weekend.

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