Gresham-Barlow teachers, district reach deal: 'the strike is over'

Gresham-Barlow teachers, district reach deal: 'the strike is over' »Play Video
Teachers, students and supporters cheer and applaud after hearing they have reached a tentative agreement with the Gresham-Barlow School District in Gresham, Ore., Wednesday, April 25, 2012. The agreement was reached shortly after picketers took to the sidewalk around Gresham High School.(AP Photo/Don Ryan)

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.

Tom Urbanowicz announces the end of the strike: