A new walkout in Oakland is now adding to the strikes across the state of California as educational workers and support staff demand higher wages and better hours, freezing multiple school districts.
The Oakland Walkout:
Public school teachers in Oakland took to the streets on Friday in what they have deemed a "sickout," where they all called out for the day before marching downtown and conducting a large rally outside of the Oakland School District's headquarters.
The teachers are protesting over what they have called an "insulting" contract offer from the district, according to KTVU-TV. Oakland school teachers, who are among the lowest paid in the Bay Area, are calling for a 22% raise in their negotiations, also calling for better class sizes than what they have under their previous contract, which expired in October.
Strikes in Los Angeles:
The Bay Area walkout comes after another strike earlier in the week in Los Angeles, which essentially shut down the city's school district, with an estimated 500,000 children being left without schools to go to. That strike also centers around a desired pay raise but is mainly focused on school support workers such as bus drivers, as well as special education instructors.
"The issue in Los Angeles is not confined to Los Angeles. It's an issue across the country and it has been decades in the making," said Princess Moss, vice president of the National Education Association said, via the Associated Press. "It's an injustice for these school employees who work so hard and do so much for our students."
The strike in Los Angeles prompted concerns over walkouts in other areas, a worry that has clearly proved to have merit in Oakland, where teachers continue their fight for higher wages.
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