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DPS Teacher strike 'on hold'; goal to reach new contract before next school year

(WKEF/WRGT)

DAYTON (WKEF/WRGT) -- A teacher strike is on hold as the Dayton Education Association (DEA) and DPS try to agree on a new contract before the school year ends.

Both sides are meeting with a federal mediator every day this week. But if they can't get a deal done the union says no contract equals no work.

The idea of a teacher strike doesn't sit well with Ataul Osama. His son goes to Dayton Public Schools.

“The losers here are going to be the children ultimately,” Osama said.

But he understands that negotiations are complicated. Osama knows the district has financial limits, but says teachers need to get paid.

“I know there are points to be made on both sides and I appreciate that,” Osama said.

DEA wants better salaries and benefits, among other things.

Union President David Romick says DPS needs to be more competitive with other districts.

“We are committed to this process and hope to make progress this week,” Romick said.

School ends next week.

Will there be a deal before summer break?

“That would be ideal, but at this point it's a little unrealistic,” Romick said.

The current contract expires June 30th.

DPS Superintendent Rhonda Corr, releasing a statement tonight.

"We remain committed to the mediation process over the next several days and remain optimistic that a settlement will be reached," Corr said.

There are still a number of issues on the table that need to be resolved

Romick says there won't be a strike this school year, but there might be one this fall.

Meaning more than a thousand teachers and professionals would miss time in the classroom.

Osama says both sides need to think about the kids.

“I would just encourage them to continue to negotiate and to keep at the forefront what's really, really important,” Osama said.

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