Teachers Strike at 42 Schools in Seattle Suburbs – Peoria Teachers Could Strike Next – 300,000 Teachers Shortage Nationwide

Folks, 

Greetings from the Burgh, where we are tracking a series of teacher strikes about to hit as the school year starts. 

Teachers Strike at 42 Schools in Washington State

In the suburbs of Seattle, teachers have gone on strike at 42 schools in the Kent School District. Teachers say they want higher salaries, smaller class sizes, and more mental health support for students. 

“Students and education staff need a level of support we aren’t getting,” Kris Hill, an English teacher at Kentwood High School, told KIRO-TV. “Counselors, in particular, have been one of our biggest concerns — they have about 400 students each. I have 150.”

For more, check out KIRO

Peoria Teachers Move to Strike 

In Peoria, Illinois, teachers are also threatening to strike. Teachers says they are upset that federal money isn’t being spent on raises for teachers. 

“The dollar amount that we’re apart here with contract negotiations, you’ve got the money, and you will be okay in the future to take care of the teachers. We’ve got to do something to retain teachers that we have, recruit new teachers, and boost morale,” Matt McCaw, Peoria Federation of Teachers bargaining chair told WMBD. 

For more, check out WMBD. 

Philly Support Staff Could Strike Next Week

In Philadelphia, over 2,000 support staff have voted to strike next week unless demands are met for better working conditions and higher wages.

“There are still workers in our bargaining unit at the Philadelphia School District who make poverty wages. There are workers in this bargaining unit who have not been trained to mitigate asbestos, they have not been trained to de-escalate dangerous situations in schools, they have not been trained on what to do if there is an active shooter. This is unacceptable,” John Bynum, Assistant District Leader at SEIU 32BJ told WCAU.

For more, check out WCAU.

300,000 Teacher Shortage Nationwide

Conditions are ripe for more strikes with school districts facing a massive teacher shortage. Nationwide, schools are 300,000 teachers short of where they need to be to meet the need of students. Union leaders cite the burnout from COVID as well as low salaries and crowded classrooms.

“The political situation in the United States, combined with legitimate aftereffects of covid, has created this shortage,” Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, told the Washington Post. “This shortage is contrived.”

For more, check out the Washington Post.

Help Us Track Teachers’ Strikes 

As teacher strikes happen across the country, please send us tips at [email protected] so that we can track them. 

Donate to help us cover these crucial strikes. Please, if you can sign up as one of our 712 recurring donors today 

Alright, folks that’s all for today. We will be back with much more tomorrow. 

Love & Solidarity, 


Melk 

About the Author

Mike Elk
A protege of Bill Greider, Mike Elk is an Emmy-nominated labor reporter who covered Lula & the drug war in Brasil, and spent years covering union organizing in the South for The Guardian. In 2015, he used his NLRB settlement from being fired illegally for union organizing at Politico to start the crowd-funded Payday Report. He lives in his hometown of Pittsburgh, where he grew up in a UE union household. Email: [email protected]

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