Teacher strike looms at South Bay schools

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CHULA VISTA, Calif. — The Sweetwater School District and its teachers reached an impasse Wednesday while negotiating a new contract. They’ve been talking for almost a year with no deal in sight.

Sweetwater is the second largest district in the county operating 26 high schools and middle schools.

TEACHER STRIKE SINGSThe union representing the teachers, the Sweetwater Education Association, has called for a strike vote to take place Thursday and Friday. If teachers approve this drastic negotiating measure, the union could call for a work stoppage at any point in the near future.

“They have yet to make the argument there’s no money at this point, in fact, we know they have money to pay for our proposal and we know they’re getting more money next year,” said Roberto Rodriguez, the union’s president.

Rodriguez said the district also wants teachers to pay a lot more for medical benefits.

“In some cases it could double, families would get hit especially hard,” said Rodriguez.

Rodriguez says teachers have sacrificed a lot during the last six years taking furlough days and agreeing to class-size increases with no pay raises.

Sweetwater School District officials did not return calls for a comment about the negotiations and the looming teacher strike.

If teachers and their leaders decide to strike, it would effect 40,000 students in the south bay.


  • Robert Arreola

    While your comments from SEA Presidents Roberto Rodriguez are true, the vote is called for a breach in the contract which has affected all members. For two months, I had money illegally deducted from my paycheck, as did all single employees and anyone opting out of the health care option. On February 28th the rest of the union members had money illegally deducted from their paychecks. The district agreed last year to fund healthcare to a certain level and at the last minute in October went back on its agreement. This is an Unfair Labor Practice Strike and is not connected in any way with current negotiations. This is not a negotiation tactic by SEA.

    While negotiations are supposedly being held with the mediator, the Superintendent has taken two separate vacations. How serious is he and his bargaining team?

    • Fred

      Talk to your freakin union, they are the thiffs.

      Go to Mexico and see if you can find a good job over there. Wait for it…………..

  • Thankful4work

    Wouldn't it be nice if everyone could petulantly stamp our feet and stop work because things don't go our way. Obamacare has caused everyone's healthcare to increase, and Obama is the unions' sweetheart. They worked so hard to get him into office, but want everyone else to pay for it. I am so sick of the teachers and their striking. They are paid well, have good benefits and pensions, and a ridiculous job security after tenure hits. Quit threatening our kids! That union has gotten out of control.

  • Teacher

    I have been a substitute teacher for over 3 years and I find it strange how most ignorant people think it's all about the money. Sure, money is important to some but respect is important to all. Please, before speaking against teachers, listen to what they are trying to say. There is a reason why thousands of them are speaking out against corruption and seek truth among lies. I am not your enemy and neither are these teachers. I am just a person and like you, I want peace, truth and honesty. Please, try and understand each other instead of judging one another. I encourage Parents or anyone that is concerned or upset, to please talk to your children's teachers. There is more to this story than meets the eye.

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