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Union announces Oakland teachers to strike on Thursday

Oakland teachers paint picket signs in advance of possible strike
Oakland teachers paint picket signs in advance of possible strike 03:41

OAKLAND -- The Oakland teachers union announced Monday they will strike on Thursday after failing to reach a contract deal with the school district.

The planned work stoppage comes less than a month before the end of the school year.

Over the weekend, teachers and their supporters made picket signs in case of a strike. On Monday, the Oakland Education Association said it was now giving its official 72-hour notice before teachers hit the picket lines.

OEA interim President Ismael Armendariz announces a strike by teachers, May 1, 2023. CBS

"This means that over 3,000 educators will be on the picket lines. We know Oakland is a union town and we know our community will not cross the picket line," said OEA interim President Ismael Armendariz. "We promise you we've done everything we can to avert this strike."

Teachers were asking for a 23% raise and various classroom improvements. Last week the Oakland Unified School District said that its offer of a 22% raise and $3,000 in back pay is fair. However, OEA says that only applies to tenured teachers and not other staff.

In a statement, OUSD said it was disappointed in the announcement of a strike but pleased to hear the union will continue to negotiate at the bargaining table before the May 4 strike date. 

"We look forward to reaching an agreement that benefits our students, educators, and District. We appreciate the hard work of both negotiating teams as they have worked nearly non-stop to come to a resolution," the statement said. "Our team has remained at the bargaining table daily since Thursday and is committed to continuing to work in good faith toward a contract that works for both sides. We remain optimistic that we will collectively come to a resolution in time to prevent the teachers from hitting the picket lines, and keeping our kids in school." 

This is a breaking news update. More information to be added as available.

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