Dayton Public Schools feels impact of ATU strike

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Dayton Public Schools is speaking out now that the RTA Union strike has started putting a hold on public transportation in the Miami Valley. It’s leaving many students without a ride to and from school.

According to the RTA, they transport about 1,000 DPS students on the average weekday. Now, those students are having to find an alternative way to get to class.

According to Dayton Superintendent Rhonda Corr, their schools are trying to be as flexible as they can be with students who miss or are late to class because of the strike, but she says there will not be any make up days and they still expect students to get to school.

Corr says they had about 858 high schoolers absent from class today. That accounted for about an 8% drop from typical attendance but they can’t say for sure it’s due to the strike.

Corr said the community and church organizations have stepped up to help many students get to and from class.

“We knew that some parents would come through and take their children or connect with creating a car pool but we also knew some children would have challenges so I’m very grateful the community has stepped up in such a way out of the kindness of their hearts,” said Corr.

As far as a message to the RTA and the Union, Corr said she grew up in a union family and hopes both sides “respect the process.”

The Amalgamated Transit Union local 1385 walked off the job Monday morning at 12:01 a.m. Monday, leaving students, residents, veterans and other residents without a method of transportation.

The ATU members walked off the job after the RTA was unable to reach an agreement with the union for a new contract. Representatives from both sides met with a mediator Sunday but no deal was reached.

Union workers are upset over wages and health care costs, while RTA officials say they’ve put an offer on the table that the union is refusing to accept.

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