With 48 Hours To Go, LAUSD Strike Talks Enter Another Day

Representatives from the Los Angeles Unified School District and United Teachers Los Angeles will return to the negotiating table Wednesday morning, but the possibility of a teachers’ strike looms larger than ever.

Both sides met again for several hours Monday, but no progress was made. LAUSD says it upped its offer by $75 million to no avail.

The school district insists it’s incapable of meeting all of the union’s demands. The union maintains that LAUSD’s offer of a retroactive 6% pay raise doesn’t go far enough.

As CalSchoolNews has noted, UTLA wants raises of 6.5% along with reduced class sizes, increases in support staff, changes to standardized testing, and a crackdown on charter schools. It insists the district is sitting on a nearly $2 billion reserve. The district counters that it is spending at a deficit, teetering on bankruptcy, and already at risk of a county takeover.

LAUSD has hired 400 substitutes in the event that a strike does occur on Thursday. That’s a drop in the bucket compared to 30,000 prepared to strike, and some parents worry it could make for a chaotic scene.

In the event of a strike, the district plans to place students in large spaces such as gymnasiums or auditoriums and provide them with online course material, the Los Angeles Times reports. They may also ease background requirements so that more parents can volunteer.

All eyes are on Wednesday.