No Contract; Dallas Teachers Announce One-Day Strike

DALLAS TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- Teachers in the Dallas School District will be walking the picket line once again on Tuesday.

Teachers say they've been working without a contract for three and a half years and they wanted the school board to approve their latest offer at Monday's board meeting.

Tempers flared as Monday's meeting came to a close, and it became clear there would be no vote on the new contract teachers offered to the district.

The teachers union said the board rejected its contract offer over the weekend which included salary freezes and health care concessions. The district said the terms of that contract would be fiscally impossible to meet.

"The board's statements are disingenuous at best. We have a contract that was put together based upon prior board proposals, so we know it is affordable," said Mark McDade, Dallas Education Association.

Before the meeting, the teachers union rallied outside the high school where the meeting was held.

While the board did not vote on the teachers contract, it did approve a nearly $39 million budget for the next school year which has a 1.5 percent property tax increase. That means a person owning a home worth $152,000 will see a hike of $32 a year.

Now with no vote, teachers say they'll walk the picket line.

"Absolutely disappointing. At this point, it's tearing apart our community. (I've) been here all my life. This is really sad to see this state of affairs," said Matt Samuel, Dallas Education Association.

Because of a previous strike this school year, students in the district are already scheduled to be in class until nearly the end of the month. That's why the teachers can only strike for one day.

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