Canton teachers hold informational picket
CANTON - During the informational picket by the Canton teachers prior to the start of Thursday's Canton Area School Board meeting, the teachers' union representative announced that an unfair labor practice charge had been filed against the district.
"You guys have been bargaining for 21 months," said Stu Karschner, PSEA Representative as the teachers stood outside the high school, near the street, with yellow signs that had the message of "We Support Our Public Schools."
"For 21 months now , we've gone and the district really hasn't changed their proposal at all from what it was 21 months ago. They haven't given us any proposal since January, and the one in January wasn't much of a change from the one before. They're just not bargaining. We've filed an unfair labor practice today claiming that they're not bargaining in good faith."
He said it would take a while to "wind through the system."
John Holland, the regional field director for the PSEA, who also attended the informational picket and spoke to the teachers, said that the charge was filed with the Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board.
During the picket, three drivers who passed by beeped their horns in apparent support of the teachers; a few others appeared to not be in support.
Teachers from the Athens Area School District joined the Canton teachers.
Athens teacher Jessica Attardo said she showed up because she was a big advocate of helping to protect the right to collective bargaining, "and ensure they get fair contract negotiations."
She thought the teachers were being treated unfairly by the board, especially because the teachers felt they had to end the recent "working to rule" campaign.
The teachers' union said there were threats of legal action and dismissals from the school district, in explaining why the campaign ended.
In a news release, the PSEA said that on Monday, Aug. 26, the Canton Area School District, represented through its hired law firm, notified the CAEA that the district believed the association was engaging in an unlawful strike by failing to participate in any activities outside of the contractual school day, and threatened legal action against the association.
Look for a further report in a future edition of The Daily Review.