Stroudsburg Area Teachers Strike

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STROUDSBURG -- Nearly 400 teachers in the Stroudsburg Area School District walked off the job Monday morning.

Teachers walked the picket line up and down Main Street in front of the high school. They started around 8:30 a.m. and cleared out just after 11 a.m.

Teachers have been working under the terms of an old contract for nearly two years.

The union also says teachers have not had a raise since 2012.

The main sticking points are salary and health care.

There are 393 teachers in the Stroudsburg Area School District.

Some are picketing at the high school and others are in front of Chipperfield Elementary in Stroud Township.

"This is great unity," said Stroudsburg Area Education Association president Aaron Chapin. "Our members believes that a resolution needs to happen and they all want to be back in the classroom but they are also all willing to come out here and do what needs to be done."

The president of the Stroudsburg Area Education Association says teachers have not had a raise since 2012. The main sticking points are salary and health care.

"It is tough not being there right now but at some point, we had to tell the school board enough is enough," said Chapin.

There are 393 teachers in the Stroudsburg Area School District.

Superintendent Dr. Cosmas Curry hopes the district can find a solution that avoids a large tax hike.

"At the end of the day, I want them back. I want to reestablish the schedules and regimentation and get things back on track for our student sake."

The association tells us teachers are looking for job security and less than a two percent raise. The district says whatever agreement they come to, they don't want it to be a burden on taxpayers.

Parents just want this problem solved soon.

According to association officials, this strike can only last six days.

Tanya Paxson has two children in the district.

"I know it's been a long time since they have had a raise, so I do know, but then it is hard on the parents' end trying to figure out what you're going to do with your kids," said Paxson.

The Stroudsburg Area School district has not had a strike since the mid-1980s.

According to the superintendent, a meeting is scheduled for Tuesday morning to discuss the proposals on the table. There is no school Tuesday in the Stroudsburg Area School District.

14 comments

  • dmfeld22

    Teachers and bankers should swap salaries. We don’t have enough unions. We were once headed in the right direction, with respect to worker’s rights (1935), not any more.

    The fact that vital service employees have to strike for a lousy 2% raise and minor adjustments to their health care package is indicative of a system that doesn’t work for the majority of the population. It’s also firing offense for the school board heirarchy. Anyone who blames the teachers, here, didn’t pay enough attention to them, when class was in session, which has rendered their ability for rational thought inoperable.

    Union protection needs to be more widespread and more strongly entrenched. The vast majority (99%) have experienced a decrease in wages since 1973, and are so afraid of losing their jobs, they’ll blame the teachers, here. It is
    precisely because they lack the wider protection of organized labor. If the protection were there, 2% wouldn’t even be a discussion. Instead, everyone here, with children in the burg has to suffer.

    2% is too much.? For who?

  • Anubis

    I’m sick of them with their “working x time without a contract”.

    Alot of people work without a contract.

    Try working in the private sector.

    Public school teachers shouldn’t be getting paid more than the average wage in the district they work in. You only work part of the year, well tough luck then you only get paid for that part by the hour.

  • Hawkeye

    First Steve, home-schooling is allowed. I encourage you to excersise this option because you clearly feel this a better option. Second, if teachers have the easy life, then why don’t you get your degree and live the life? Third, what should someone required by the state to have a degree and 180 hours every 5 years after of continuing education be paid? Right now the they receive a middle class wage?

  • Barbara

    What these commenters, and many others, don’t realize is you wouldn’t have your private sector job–or ANY job– if it wasn’t for teachers. To succeed in this world, to have any kind of chance–you need an education. Go ahead and home school your kids, and see how far they go since if you’re not a teacher. And if you are able to teach them–it because someone TAUGHT you. Most private sector jobs get holidays off and the teachers usually have in-service days (working) when the kids are off. There are just as many private sector jobs, requiring college degrees, that have higher salaries than teachers. They can’t help it if you’re not one of them. You try to teach up to 30 kids at a time, keep them on task, make sure they actually grasp the important concepts, in addition to dealing with parents (of all kinds), the children’s personal and, sometimes, health issues, the administration, all the while keeping themselves educated on new ways to teach their subject matter (which is usually done in the summer) to better educate your kids. You wouldn’t last a day. And, no, I’m not a teacher. You want numbers: read the signs. Top 10% of the schools in the state. And if you can read it: thank a teacher.

  • alex

    Steve, you need to realize teachers don’t get paid for the summer months, they get paid during the summer months. . . that is a big difference. Teachers only get paid for contracted months, but rather than not getting paid two-three months a year, it is easier for budgeting purposes to take less per paycheck, but to get have paychecks every month, so their salary is spread out all year. If you think teachers are paid so well, why not leave your job and get an education degree? Teachers should demand $12 bucks an hour per kid, like day cares charge, then see how fast people beg for the current pay scale.

  • BufordTJustice

    Try the private sector raises get advanced when quality of service is achieved show me the numbers then we will show you the money!!!

  • jim

    Get a 401k contribute to your benefits …then get your 2% raise a year….oh and if you have a masters in business admin. collect that salary when you are working in that field

  • Hawkeye

    Amazing. Going on 5 years with no pay raise making middle class wages and still people demonize them. What is the problem with unions? People getting together to work for better working conditions and classrooms for kids…..those bastards. What should we have the middle class make? I mean businesses are making record profits and wages are stagnant. That’s working out well for everyone isn’t it?

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