DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – The countdown to reach a deal is underway one day after teachers file a 10-day strike notice with the Dayton School Board. District leaders say they have a plan if teachers do strike, but it’s costing them big bucks.
If teachers are on strike when school starts, the district says they’ll be relying on more than 600 substitute teachers to take over. Regardless of whether teachers strike, the district is still going to have to shell out thousands of dollars.
“If a strike occurs,” Dayton Public Schools Superintendent Rhonda Corr said. “There will be tension.”
Superintendent Corr says the district is spending $140,000 on strike preparation and security. The money is being spent on hiring a private company now in charge of recruiting more than 600 subs. Regardless if a strike happens, the district says it is forced to spend money to prepare.
“It’s to prepare it’s to keep everyone safe,” Superintendent Corr said. “And orderly and to make sure that schools are open and parents have an opportunity to send their children to school.”
“Ultimately no one wins,” Western Ohio Education Association President-Elect Ella Jordan Isaac said. “If indeed DEA does strike, teachers don’t win. Students don’t win. Families don’t win and the community of Dayton does not win.”
Jordan-Isaac knows from experience. She was on the picket line in 1992 when DPS teachers went on strike for 17 days. She’s hopeful both sides can reach a deal.
“I believe that there is an earnest commitment in the room to avert a strike,” Jordan-Isaac said. “I know many of the DEA members are hoping the same.”
At this time, Superintendent Corr says it’s hard to say how much each school day will cost the district if the teachers strike.
“We do have to be fiscally responsible to our tax payers, but we also want to respect our teachers,” Superintendent Corr said. “And do everything we can to hopefully avoid a strike.”
The district could not say yet how much they will be paying each sub. We do know teachers on strike, will not get paid. In the past, the unions have offered loans and other assistance to teachers while they’re off the job. In order to avoid a strike, both sides must reach a deal by August 10th.