St. Paul teachers set strike date, SPPS responds with plans

As contract negotiations continue, the union representing St. Paul teachers has set a strike date.

If a deal on a new contract isn't agreed upon by March 11, teachers are set to leave the classroom for a picket line. The St. Paul Federation of Educators announced that strike deadline on Monday.

In a letter to the school board, the union writes: "Many of our members will experience financial hardship in a strike. Many of our members are already experiencing financial hardship due to the fact that rising costs – especially to our health care – and stagnant wages have made it difficult to keep up with everyday expenses. As other nearby school districts settle contracts with robust wage and benefits increases, our members have been clear – we cannot continue to attract and retain the high-quality educators we need to continue to build the school communities we all deserve without investing in those educators by strengthening the wages and benefits they receive for the critical work they do."

The union says it presented a package to the district last Friday with counters on wages and other pay. Another mediation session is scheduled for Friday, March 1The hope for the union is to reach a new deal without a strike.

SPPS could have school through Spring Break, into summer

St. Paul Public Schools responded to the union's notice with its plans in the event of a strike. If a strike occurs:

  • There will be no school for students in Pre-K through Grade 12, Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) and Early Childhood Family Education (ECFE). 
  • All youth and adult Community Education classes will be canceled. 
  • Varsity athletics will continue on a case-by-case basis. 
  • High school students might face challenges earning enough credits for graduation. 
  • The school year could be extended into spring break or summer.