Sources Say Bossier Parish Teachers Are Planning Strike or Walk Out
This weekend, Bossier Parish residents voted down pay raises for Bossier Parish School teachers, as well as a proposal to increase Bossier Schools technology funds. The measures were both voted down by more than 74% of the vote.
Today teachers and students returned to classrooms for the first time to since the vote. As the schools kickoff Teacher Appreciation Week, some of those teachers are talking about a strike. Multiple sources inside Bossier School classrooms are telling KEEL News that teachers are talking about a full scale strike, or at least a walkout. The idea of a "sick out" has been suggested as well.
Jackie Lansdale, the President of the Red River United Teacher's Union, joined KEEL News this morning to talk about what the vote said to Bossier Teachers. Lansdale spoke with KEEL News later in the day as well, after it became clear that Bossier Teachers were discussing the possibility of a strike. When asked about the possibility of a teacher walk out, Lansdale said:
"I think it'd be fair to say you can look for something this week. If it happens."
When Lansdale was asked if it would be a large group of teachers taking a "work action", she said:
"What we're just starting to see is it boil up. You know, it started boiling up after the election. Now I would tell anyone to go back and look at a West Virginia, or a Kentucky, or Colorado...those things are pretty organic. Those are usually when teachers just finally say, and school employees say, 'look that's enough'. And that's really what you saw, and that's what I'm seeing. I'm seeing this bubble up from the school side up."
Lansdale was asked about the potential impact of a teacher strike on the end of the year for high school students taking finals, or graduations. Lansdale indicated that any movement that could influence the future of high school students would be discussed with Bossier Administrators before actions were taken.