The latest Southwestern Pennsylvania School District hit by a strike is the Moon Area School District with 294 teachers off the job today.
Negotiations were held for several hours but the 2 sides could not reach an agreement over pay and benefits. Pennsylvania State Education Association spokesman Butch Santicola said a meeting will be held this afternoon and if not resolved, the teachers will picket on Tuesday. The strike has been met with mixed feelings in the community, he said.
District officials posted a letter on the web site indicating the teachers union negotiator rejected an offer to extend the old contract for 1 year with a 2.88% pay increase for teachers, but their contributions to their health care would have risen from 4.1% to 5% of the cost of the insurance.
Although it may seem as if there is a different school district striking every week, Santicola said there less strikes this year than there were last year across the state - there are just more this year in Southwestern Pennsylvania.
One of those strikes, in the Bethel Park District, entered its third week today. Administrators began teaching classes today for seniors so they can graduate on time.