WOBURN – Schools will be closed in Woburn Thursday as the teachers strike enters its fourth day. The Woburn Teachers Association and its president will now face fines for not returning to the classroom.
Woburn Teachers Association President Barbara Locke said they were making small gains before negotiations ended Wednesday night. “It is clear that they do not want to get this done,” Locke said.
Teachers have been on strike since Mondayforcing school to be cancelled.
The district filed an injunction to stop the strike. A judge agreed Monday night and ordered teachers back to the classroom. Teachers continued the strike on Tuesday and Wednesday.
On Wednesday, a judge found Woburn Teachers Association and WTA President Barbara Locke in contempt for violating the injunction. The judge said if teachers were not back in class on Thursday, both would be fined $40,000, with the fines increasing by $5,000 each day the strike continues.
“I’m not worried about paying for it, we’re worried about the children we’re not worried about the fines,” Locke said.
The judge also ordered that the fines be paid by 5 pm each day.
The Woburn Teacher’s Association said they are asking for increased pay for teachers, with a focus on paraprofessionals, along with smaller class sizes, and increased gym time for elementary school students.
Woburn Mayor Scott Galvin has said he had sat with the WTA more than 25 times over the past year and reached a signed agreement with the union in October, but union members rejected it. Galvin said the city offered a 10.75% raise over three years, but the WTA countered with 14.75% raises over the same period.
“We’re frustrated. The judge has ordered the teachers to get back in the classroom,” Galvin said Wednesday night. “It’s disrespectful to our parents, taxpayers and we’re working hard to get this done. Teachers need to get back in the classroom where they belong and stop breaking the law.”
Thanks for reading CBS NEWS.
Create your free account or log in
for more features.