NBC10Philadelphia.com - Marisa Brahney
Neshaminy School District teachers took to the picket line Monday morning because they have been working under an expired contract. NBC10's Marisa Brahney spoke to some students and parents about the strike.
In the midst of another strike from teachers in the Neshaminy School District, some local parents are taking a stand of their own.
The Neshaminy Federation of Teachers officially went on strike for the second time this year on Monday as they continue to battle with the school district over an expired contract, a dispute that first began in 2008. They previously went on a 9-day strike back in January. The teachers union tells NBC10 the main sticking points are retirement, healthcare and salary. They also say there are no scheduled negotiations expected to happen any time soon.
Fed up parents stood opposite the striking teachers this morning to let their voices be heard.
“They’re trying to get their point across,” said Angie Manning, a parent of a Neshaminy student. “But they’re taking it out on our children!”
“We are so disgusted with what the union is doing,” said Susan Loncosky, another parent. “It’s an embarrassment.”
Anne Schmidt, Vice President of the Neshaminy Federation of Teachers, says she understands why some parents are frustrated.
“I certainly do understand that they’re tired of it,” said Schmidt. “I understand and appreciate people speaking out and having their voice heard on both sides. It’s time though to get both sides into the room and say ‘get it done.’”
Senior students at Neshaminy High School are exempt from any final exams missed during the strike since its occurring only days before the end of the school year. They will still graduate as planned on June 13. By state law however, all other grades will have to make up the lost time, including exams. If the latest strike lasts ten days as expected, the students could be in school until June 29.
"The mentality is yes, it does cut the year short," said Senior Austin Gardener. "It's unfortunate and we're upset."
Underclassmen Cody Minnig says the strike could cut into his summer job.
"I have to be in school while they're working which kind of messes me up," said Minnig.
“This should not be happening,” said Loncosky. “It’s causing stress that should not be there on these kids.”
"Last Thursday when we met we made a sincere offer that we would negotiate through the weekend to try and avoid this," said Schmidt. "The board flatly rejected that."
NBC10 tried to contact the school district to hear their side of the story. We have not yet heard back from them however.