Oakland teachers plan big announcement about possible strike

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- On Saturday, Oakland teachers could announce plans for a strike. They were waiting for a key report from the state that came out Friday.

Parent Wendy Johnson spent Friday night shopping, but its Saturday's announcement about a possible Oakland teacher strike that is on her mind.

"My concern, for one thing, is for the kids, because now they will be out of school," says Johnson, the parent of two children in the Oakland school district.

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The announcement follows the results of an independent fact-finding report commissioned by the state that was released on Friday.

The results are not binding, but the report is important because it gives teachers the green light to legally strike.

Teachers have been threatening to strike for months saying goes to years of neglect and overspending by the district.

The three main points the Oakland Education Association is fighting for are smaller class size, more counselors and nurses for students, and a 12-percent raise over the next three years.

Johnson says smaller class size is important for parents, too. That's why she supports the teachers.

"If (striking) is what they have to do to get the word across, I think it's good," she says.

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The Oakland Unified School District declined to comment for this story, but have said in that past that they don't have the money and are looking to close schools as a result. They are countering with only a five percent pay increase.

Gail Posey says her sons got a great education from Oakland schools, however, she sees a big decline in what her grandchildren are learning at those same schools now. She believes better pay will produce better results.

"We should pay and take care of our teachers. Because our kids have to be more prepared for the future. For teachers to have to sit down and beg for money? That's crazy," she says.



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Many in the community, like Taylor Memorial United Methodist Church, are rallying behind teachers and students. The church will open their doors to students so they have a place to go if teachers strike.

"We come to comfort our teachers, who are struggling. We come to comfort the children, who have an uneasiness about will happen to them," says Pastor Anthony Jenkins.

That meeting will be held at 1:30 p.m. at the Oakland Education Association office in Oakland.

The OEA says if they strike, they will give parents 48 hours' notice.

Take a look at the latest stories and videos about the Oakland teacher strike.
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