School strikes rare; Dayton only Ohio district on verge


Dayton’s teachers union is the only school union in Ohio on the verge of a strike, according to the State Employee Relations Board.

That reflects the overall trend that strikes by school staff, once fairly common in Ohio, have become very rare in recent years.

Leaders of Dayton Public Schools and the Dayton Education Association had their first mediation session in two months Thursday, going from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. They’re scheduled to repeat that process Monday and Wednesday, with a strike date looming Aug. 11, just ahead of the Aug. 15 first day of school.

RELATED: Union document spells out key Dayton strike issues

Only three school unions statewide have actually gone on strike in the past eight years, according to SERB officials — Louisville (outside Canton) last November, the Columbus suburb of Reynoldsburg in 2014 and Strongsville, just south of Cleveland, in 2013.

By comparison, there were three Ohio strikes in the 2006-07 school year alone, including one in Huber Heights. That strike — which started on the third day of the school year — shut down Huber schools for a week, as teachers and the district argued over pay, health insurance, class size, subcontracting of jobs, and teacher planning time.

2006 STORY: Huber Heights teacher strike ends

Christine Dietsch, executive director of SERB, confirmed that the Dayton Education Association is the only school union statewide that currently has a 10-day strike notice on file with the state.

That doesn’t mean they’re the only union without a contract. Both Columbus City Schools and Greenon schools just north of Fairborn are still negotiating with their teachers after contracts expired this summer. Dayton Public Schools’ bus drivers are in the same position, and some of those unions likely will begin the new school year under the terms of the old agreements until a new deal can be reached.

That’s what happened with Dayton’s teachers in the fall of 2013, as they worked under the old deal until reaching a new contract agreement in December 2013. But Dayton teachers have used “no contract, no work” as a rallying cry this time.

RELATED: Schools uses raises, perks to compete for teachers

Dayton Superintendent Rhonda Corr maintained an optimistic stance on her way into Thursday’s mediation session.

“We’re gonna go in and negotiate today with good faith,” Corr said. “And, you know, we just need both sides to give and take a little bit and move forward because that’s what’s best for our kids.”

Reached after Thursday’s session, teachers union President David Romick had no comment other than to say they’d be back at it Monday morning. Corr said there was “some progress made,” and she was looking forward to meeting again.

RELATED: Is teacher pay in your district higher or lower?

From the mid-1980s through 2009, there were only two years without at least one school strike in Ohio, and several years saw more than a half-dozen walkouts, according to SERB. Vandalia-Butler teachers were on strike for 22 days in spring of 1986, and Kettering teachers walked out for four days in 1991.

The last time Dayton teachers went on strike was March of 1993, a strike that lasted 16 days.



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Local

Two reportedly taken by CareFlight after motorcycle crash in Darke Co.
Two reportedly taken by CareFlight after motorcycle crash in Darke Co.

Two people were reportedly taken by CareFlight to a local hospital. Injuries are unknown at this time. A motorcycle accident occurred Saturday night on State Route 127, south of Route 705, in North Star village, according to Darke County dispatch. Two people were reportedly ejected from the motorcycle and CareFlight was requested. Crews were dispatched...
Vehicle crash into a tree in Fairborn, crews on scene
Vehicle crash into a tree in Fairborn, crews on scene

Crews are on scene for a vehicle that crashed into a tree in Fairborn Saturday evening. The vehicle crashed in the 3400 block of Spangler Road, according to scanner traffic. The vehicle is smoking and suffered moderate damage, initial reports say. Injuries are unknown. We will update this story as more information becomes available.
MedFlight transports one from motorcycle crash in Springfield
MedFlight transports one from motorcycle crash in Springfield

UPDATE @ 8:11 p.m.: The male motorcycle driver was transported via MedFlight to a local hospital, police say. He sustained non-life threatening injuries. Reports say passengers in the other vehicle are uninjured. INITIAL STORY: MedFlight is reportedly on standby for a man who crashed his motorcycle in a two-vehicle crash in Springfield Saturday evening...
Seven animals adopted from Greene Co. for ‘Clear the Shelters’ event
Seven animals adopted from Greene Co. for ‘Clear the Shelters’ event

Many Animal Control Centers across the county are looking to ‘Clear the Shelters’ Saturday by offering free or reduced adoption fees. Animal Control in Greene County stated pit bulls take up a lot of their shelter due to over-breeding and pit bull mixes have a harder time getting adopted than other breeds due to the stigmas that come with...
Cell phones make ‘upskirting’ easier for voyeurs. Here’s how police say you can protect yourself.
Cell phones make ‘upskirting’ easier for voyeurs. Here’s how police say you can protect yourself.

Voyeurism of the “peeping Tom” variety or a hidden camera has been around for years, but the boom of cell phones has made it easier than ever for unsuspecting people to become victims of “upskirting,” law enforcement and legal professionals said. MORE: Report: Voyeur taking pictures up shoppers’ skirts at Target in West...
More Stories