NO STRIKE? Seattle Public Schools and its teachers reach tentative agreement; school starts Wednesday

9:52 PM: Just in via text from the Seattle Public Schools teachers’ union: Tentative contract agreement reached, so school is ON for Wednesday. They’ll vote the following Saturday. More to come.

10:06 PM: And confirmation from the district, via its website – though no details yet from either side.

ADDED EARLY SATURDAY: The union says that it won’t release details until after its board reviews the tentative agreement on Tuesday.

ADDED SATURDAY NIGHT: The union shared a few details with members in an e-mail (shared with us anonymously by a recipient) sent tonight, including:

… We are pleased to announce that our bargaining team reached a tentative agreement on a one year contract last night with Seattle Public Schools that includes a 10.5% increase in pay for all educators – certificated, paraprofessionals, and office professionals (SAEOPs) as well as substitutes. Among many other highlights of the contract, staff will now be eligible for five days of paid parental leave.

Our team is working right now to prepare documents and summaries for review by the SEA Board of Directors on Tuesday evening, after which they will be released to all members. …

41 Replies to "NO STRIKE? Seattle Public Schools and its teachers reach tentative agreement; school starts Wednesday"

  • Alison August 31, 2018 (9:55 pm)

    That headline is not entirely factual. They have reached a tentative agreement. That agreement will be voted upon by SEA members. If it is voted down, there will be a strike. There is still potential for a strike. If it is ratified we will have a new contract and no strike. The old contract will cover the first three days of school. 

    • WSB August 31, 2018 (10:12 pm)

      IF THERE’S A STRIKE IT WON’T BE RIGHT AWAY didn’t quite fit. But I’ll change the colon to a question mark.

      • Bryan August 31, 2018 (11:04 pm)

        Made total sense the first way. No need to accommodate for those pushing the union agenda. 

        • WSB August 31, 2018 (11:43 pm)

          The commenter was correct; the chance of a strike remains until the contract is ratified.

        • HappyCamper September 3, 2018 (11:07 am)

          By “agenda” you must mean a living wage and decent medical, dental and vision coverage for their families?

      • That was funny August 31, 2018 (11:09 pm)


  • Khalid August 31, 2018 (10:12 pm)

    How about you guys strike for a new teaching system? How about teaching me my human rights? Or better yet the law? Or how to help someome having a seizure? But no, teach me the Pythagorean theorem because hey! I wont have a calculator with me everyday! F—ing absurd. Im learning useless garbage. I dont know how to live and im almost 18.

    • Concerned September 1, 2018 (4:12 am)

      Well if you don’t know how to live and you’re almost 18, then talk to your parents. They hold a big responsibility to this issue

      • Alki resident September 1, 2018 (8:27 am)

        Khalid is spot on. Seattle public schools do not teach anything of value when it comes to life skills and beyond. They’re still teaching what happened in the 17 and 1800’s. It’s a crying shame. It shouldn’t be up to his parents to teach him everything. The schools need to change their system. I said this years ago when my kids were in grade school. 

        • fishy September 1, 2018 (11:27 am)

          Alki, your comments are frustratingly vague–are you trying to say that it’s a shame schools are teaching history, ie what happened in the 1700s?  Or are you saying schools are teaching the same things that would have been taught in the 1700s?  Because there’s a big difference.  So which is it?  Thanks!

        • CAM September 1, 2018 (12:41 pm)

          Yes please. Let’s stop teaching math, grammar, reading comprehension, history, science, or any of those other useless subjects. In fact, why not have kids enter into preordained specialty programs based on the results of standardized testing before school age so we can ensure that they are only taught the exact skills necessary to perform their mandated job duties and nothing more. In reality, all that other useless info would only serve to allow them to have the opportunity to understand the world at large and why it works the way it does and it would not be beneficial to those in power to allow them to have that ability. 

    • West Seattle Hipster September 1, 2018 (7:00 am)

      This young man gets it.   The curriculum is outdated and irrelevant, time for the education system to update what they are teaching to truly educate our youth.

      • Jethro Marx September 1, 2018 (8:17 am)

        I do not understand why people continue to slight Pythagoras; his theorem is wondrous, and those who wish to replace millenia of maths with an I-phone are living a stunted life chained to a battery charger. I used it just the other day to figure out if my ladder would reach high windows. We need to teach higher math, sooner, to every child, rather than pretending it is the province of the few.

      • fishy September 1, 2018 (10:04 am)

        WS Hister, so you would like more classes that teach law and human rights?

    • Nurse Alison September 1, 2018 (9:56 am)

      Hey Khalid I am the school nurse at Denny and whatever high school you are at I know your nurse would love to teach you about seizures and any other health emergencies.  I totally understand what you are saying but much of education is what you make happen.  Help to orgranize this!  You are right it is important.

    • wscommuter September 2, 2018 (10:11 am)

      @Khalid … because education is about building blocks.  One must learn fundamental principles and skills before learning more complex principles and skills.  So you and your classmates learn geometry and grammar and history because these fundamental parts of knowledge and skill are required to later grasp the more complicated things you should study in college.  And even if you don’t go to college, understanding how to correctly communicate and analyze and think critically are skills that we all need.  If you need proof, look no further than that we’ve elected a lying cowardly narcissist president in no small part because of the failure of too many citizens to understand the information plainly in front of them.  I realize learning math formulas isn’t fun or sexy for most.  But it matters.  Even if your own path one day will have nothing to do with math, it matters.  The development of your mind requires the rigor of studying difficult, boring and seemingly irrelevant subjects precisely because you don’t know what you might need to know one day.  Don’t assume you know now.  Give yourself time to learn and be open to life’s paths.  And you may one day be (pleasantly) surprised to see that learning the Pythagorean theorem actually mattered when you never thought it would.  Good luck in your studies.  

    • Mark47n September 3, 2018 (8:07 am)

      If you require the use of the Pythagorean Theorem (I use it often, in my job) then understanding how to use it WITHOUT your calculator serves rather well. How can you use it on a calculator if you don’t already understand it? Alas…I fear for the future. The internet has ruined generations and their willingness to RETAIN knowledge.

    • Question Mark September 3, 2018 (5:44 pm)

      Khalid, here’s my advice. Identify what you are deeply curious about then latch on to it, drink deeply and refuse to let go until your curiosity has been satisfied. Don’t give up, whatever you do …

  • Shockley September 1, 2018 (7:38 am)

    Khalid, law is taught in law school or pre-law college programs, how to help people having seizures is taught in medical or nursing school.  If you are interested in learning these things, you can get there by completing our basic education system which includes stuff like how to use an apostrophe correctly and how to express yourself clearly without resorting to curse words, and by constructing complete sentences.

  • Rick September 1, 2018 (9:00 am)

    In other breaking news, the world has changed!

  • TJ September 1, 2018 (10:03 am)

    It’s parents duty to teach life skills. A big part of schools issues now is that they feel the need to try to take on that role. Which includes money allocated towards that. I am just happy that I won’t hear anymore about school funding for a few years now. Mccleary is solved. Local levies will drop to help offset the state budget. Lets see performance improve markedly now

    • fishy September 1, 2018 (11:24 am)

      TJ, what the hell are you talking about?  Home ec, finance, typing, etc., have been around FOREVER.  How is it that a “big part of schools issues now [sic]” is taking on that role?  What?!

  • TJ September 1, 2018 (12:43 pm)

    Fishy, those things are fine. I am talking about money going to things like physical and mental health services in schools ( families and education levy), free school lunches, now morphing into free breakfasts, and rumored free dinners coming down the road for both students AND parents. We can talk about paramount duties of government and K-12 education, but when more and more money is going to non K-12 things, the well is running dry. I am just glad this issue is over. McCleary solved. Levies dropping.

    • fishy September 1, 2018 (1:02 pm)

      Hi TJ, doesn’t money that goes to physical health services later save us (taxpayers, the government, etc) a ton of money down the line since it encourages kids to have healthy habits like eating well and exercising?  I was under the impression that money spent on such things paid huge dividends in the long term.  

  • TJ September 1, 2018 (2:00 pm)

    Fishy, perhaps. Truth is there is no way to know. The point is these are duties that parents should instill. My wife and I do with our kids. Schools seem to want to play the role of home more and more. It all comes with a price tag. 

    • fishy September 1, 2018 (2:48 pm)

      “Truth is there is no way to know.”  No!  That’s not the truth at all!  That’s the opposite of the truth!  We DO know!  There are ways to know and we do know!  We’ve run studies!  We’ve looked at the numbers!  There are peer-reviewed articles published!  Yay science!  I’m linking an article that crunches the numbers and specifically shows that BILLIONS of dollars can be saved by having PE classes.  You write things like “it all comes with a price tag” but then fail to take into account the bigger picture–Yes education (physical or otherwise) costs money, but it’s been repeatedly shown that it SAVES MONEY over time!!

  • jm18 September 1, 2018 (2:06 pm)

    And I’ll even repeat it, It’s the parents job to teach life skills.  Khalid – Be proactive, instead of always waiting for someone to teach you exactly what you want to learn, teach it to yourself. My son taught himself all kinds of things that were not taught at school, it sounds like there may be other issues involved here, but I’m pretty sure that books, internet, etc., have information on human rights and hopefully how to live at 18.:)

    • The King September 1, 2018 (4:32 pm)

      I’m with you jm18, necessity is the mother of invention. But it’s too bad Sealth shut down the last auto shop class in the district because the principal thought the shop was needed to store school supplies. I had a young man (20) ask me if I knew how to change a flat tire at the Burien Fred Meyer recently. There are circumstances at home sometimes that prevent a parent from teaching these things. Youtube is always there but still…..I was fortunate to learn how to weld, cut metal, braze and use all the wood working tools I needed and then some at public schools. I still use these skills today at work and home. 

      • Sealth teacher September 1, 2018 (9:22 pm)

        Sealth has not had an auto shop program in at least 18 years. (I don’t think ever). We had a wood shop program, and it is reopening this year. 

        • miws September 2, 2018 (9:08 am)

          Seattle Teacher, Sealth had an auto shop program in the ’70’s, not sure when it was discontinued. -Back when I took Auto Shop I & II in the mid-’70’s (’76 grad), it was run by John McGinley, known to be tough and run the class in somewhat of a military fashion, but fairly and was largely respected by the students (except for maybe the total goof-offs.–Mike 

      • Que September 2, 2018 (7:47 am)

        WS High does have an autoshop program actually.  They have a rad woman who was just hired to take over that program.  

  • Shufflerunner September 1, 2018 (3:22 pm)

    This is hands down the oddest comments thread I’ve had the displeasure of reading on WSB. Perhaps, if every institution you interact with fails you, you are in fact the failure. 

    • fishy September 1, 2018 (3:44 pm)

      Really?  You weren’t around for the stolen cow thread?  

    • jm18 September 1, 2018 (4:15 pm)

      Oh, brother, then don’t comment..please.

  • 1994 September 1, 2018 (8:55 pm)

    Fingers crossed there will be no strike, and NO inconvenience to tens of thousands of children and their families. That is by far the worst part of school staff striking- the impact on children and their families.

  • fishy September 1, 2018 (10:44 pm)

    hey, instead of crossing your fingers why don’t you contact your government and tell them to pay teachers more.  just a thought.

  • TJ September 2, 2018 (11:15 am)

    The government did provide more money fishy. My large property tax increase speaks to that. The district needs to allocate it for teacher pay. The court has said McCleary is solved. Levies will drop to help offset the state budget some. Now that Seattle has agreed to this the discussion needs to go away

  • fishy September 2, 2018 (12:13 pm)

    TJ: You wrote that you had a big problem with “money going to things like physical and mental health services in schools”.  You said that you had a problem with it because it “comes with a price tag.”  When I point out that money spent on these things SAVES MONEY FOR EVERYONE you of course want the discussion to go away–because you strike me as the sort of person who never admits when they are wrong.  The truth is mental health services and PE classes are important, make kids smarter and healthier and happier, and save everyone money in the long run.  So just stop complaining about money going to physical and mental health services–those are crucial services that increase student academic achievement, reduce violence, and save money. 

  • TJ September 2, 2018 (5:52 pm)

    Fishy, I believe PE classes are a good thing. I was pointing to other practices where schools seem to be trying to step into roles parents need to be providing, and yes mental health is one. Strange to me that while people complain that K-12 education is the paramount duty of our government, we decide its a good thing to throw money at non K-12 programs, like kindergarden and free community college. You come across as someone who will never be satisfied with school funding and teacher pay. Even now when Seattle teachers are supposedely happy with their new deal.  I’m sure when local levies drop and are capped coming up you will be hollering for the state to wave that and for more and more tax money to throw at it

    • fishy September 2, 2018 (7:26 pm)

      You wrote that you were not fine with “money going to things like physical and mental health services in schools ( families and education levy), free school lunches” etc.  I am glad that you changed your tune and are now fine with some of that stuff that you said you were previously against, but I’d encourage you to re-think your position on mental health in schools as well.  As for me never being satisfied with teacher pay…  Maybe so!  I mean, I’ve not been satisfied yet, so that seems a logical conclusion.  

  • TJ September 2, 2018 (5:55 pm)

    And I meant preschool, not kindergarden

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