GRESHAM, Ore. - Teachers and Gresham-Barlow school district officials said they now have a tentative agreement that has ended a short teachers' strike that began Wednesday morning after all-night negotiations failed to produce a breakthrough.
Classes are set to resume on regular schedules Thursday after the agreement was announced at about 9:30 a.m. Wednesday following over 24 straight hours of negotiations. Teachers went on strike at 6 a.m.
"I'm here to end what's been a really long day," an emotional Tom Urbanowicz, Bargaining Chairman for the Gresham-Barlow Education Association, said. "We believe we now have a fair contract. The strike is over."
"We are thrilled that we have a tentative agreement with the teachers union," Superintendent Jim Schlachter said in a press release. "We are looking forward to resuming school tomorrow and completing a full school year for the 12,000 students we serve. We are glad that we were able to avert a work stoppage."
Terms of the agreement were not immediately revealed. Details will be released once the school board and the Gresham-Barlow Education Association have approved the agreement, officials said in a statement sent to the media.
Teachers set up picket lines at 6 a.m. Wednesday and classes were canceled across the district.
The teachers union sent a "settlement package" to the district at about 3:30 a.m. Wednesday, according to Urbanowicz.
There were reportedly eight issues that remained as sticking points. "This is the first package that I would call a 'settlement,' where we've addressed every single issue that is remaining on the table," Urbanowicz said as the strike deadline neared Wednesday morning.
After the strike deadline passed, teachers went over a counter-offer presented by the district. An agreement was announced hours later.
- Updates as posted on the Gresham-Barlow school district website
- Updates as posted on the Gresham-Barlow Education Association
Tom Urbanowicz announces the end of the strike: