Minneapolis and St. Paul teachers could go on strike in less than one week

If Minneapolis and St. Paul teachers unions don’t reach an agreement with their districts by next Tuesday they will go on strike. 

Both the Minneapolis Federation of Teachers and St. Paul Federation of Educators overwhelmingly voted to authorize a strike setting off a 10-day cooling-off period. During that time unions work with the districts through mediation to come to an agreement on a new contract. 

Tuesday, March 8th marks the end of that cooling-off period and the beginning of a strike if unions and districts can’t come to an agreement before then. 

So far, both school districts tell Fox 9 they aren’t prepared to announce any plans to offer resources to parents for childcare if teachers do strike and school is closed. They say they’re both focused on coming to an agreement first. 

The YMCA tells Fox 9 if teachers go on strike they will offer all day child care services to families at the Blaisdell YMCA, North Minneapolis YMCA and the Midway YMCA in St. Paul. 

On Tuesday the St. Paul Federation of Educators held a virtual meeting to inform parents about the possible strike and how it could impact families. More than 40 people attended the meeting. Most of the parents asking questions were in support of the union. 

When asked when families would find out if a strike was happening, union president Leah VanDassor said "I think if we can’t come to some kind of agreement at some point on Sunday night families might know by then perhaps I don’t know we’ll not stop working towards a settlement, but I would hope we wouldn’t find out late Monday night or even Tuesday morning that there’s not going to be school that day."  

Both unions have several more mediations scheduled with their districts before next Tuesday.