Teachers in Ohio's largest school district voted Sunday to strike for better learning and teaching conditions days before school started, according to the teachers' union.
The Columbus Education Association Union, which represents more than 4,000 teachers, nurses and other education professionals in the Columbus City School District.
94% of its members voted to reject the school board's "last, best and final offer,". "We are on strike for the first time since 1975". The union said on Twitter on Sunday.
Just one day before the Ohio vote, unions representing nearly 2,000 employees in the Philadelphia school district voted to approve a strike for higher wages and adequate training programs.
The strike comes at a time when schools across the country are facing critical teacher shortages and declining educator morale.
Also exacerbated by the pandemic, low wages and increasingly crowded classrooms. Columbus City Schools serves 47,000 students, according to the district admin.
In Columbus, according to the Columbus Educational Association's statement of intent to strike, the union cited class sizes and functional heating...
..and air conditioning in classrooms as examples of disagreements with the board. Despite the strike, the school year is still scheduled to begin Wednesday.
"We will continue to fight until we have safe, well-maintained and well-equipped schools in all areas," union spokeswoman Regina Fuentes said at a news conference on Monday.
Regarding the learning situation in the city's schools, a media specialist at the school library said temperatures varied widely from room to room.
Courtney Johnson told CNN's Victor Blackwell, "Students move between different buildings, like on a college campus, and you never know if your classroom will be 50 degrees or 90 degrees".
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