No end in sight for San Ysidro teacher strike - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

No end in sight for San Ysidro teacher strike

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SAN YSIDRO (CBS 8) - A huge show of support for hundreds of teachers who have walked off the job in the San Ysidro School District.

Dozens of parents chanted outside San Ysidro School District Education Center, "Parents have the power.”

The strike is planned for day number three and substitutes have been called for Friday.

Still neither the San Ysidro Education Association (SYEA) nor the San Ysidro School District officials have spoken to each other since Tuesday night when the strike began; not even about another meeting.

More than 200 teachers have been on the picket lines since Wednesday and students are gripping strike signs outside schools and the District Education Center,” "No more subs.”

Interim Superintendent George Cameron, Ed.D. says attendance on Wednesday was at 60 percent and on Thursday it dropped down to 50 percent.

“I really want my teacher back and I want learn and I want to be smart like everybody else,” said Jonathan Figueroa, 3rd grade, Sunset Elementary.

Some students claim the substitute teachers are putting movies on during class.

“In terms of brining kids into the school and having them sit down and watch movies, no that is not happening,” said Cameron.

On Thursday, Cameron met with the principals from its seven schools in their daily talks about the strike. He says the substitutes in the class are qualified teachers.

He believes kids belong in the classroom and not on the picket lines.

“This is an issue between adults,” said Cameron.

Teachers are fighting for better wages. The SYEA and the District have met 21 times in the past 18 months.

On Tuesday the union rejected a 2 percent pay raise, five minutes added to each school day and full-time kindergarten to retain enrollment. Cameron says in the past 4 years the district has lost more than $2 million in state aid from declining enrollment.

Parents whose kids graduated from the district showed up on the picket lines to support the teachers.

“I know these teachers are my family now, they are not just teachers, they are family,” said Josephine Thomas.

While there are plenty of signs to support teachers there is no sign of teachers getting back to school.

“We are eventually going to get back to the table there is no question about that, this can't continue,” said Cameron.

Parents are handing out right-to-know sheets demanding information about their child's substitute and qualifications. The superintendent says these are the same substitutes called on when teachers call in sick or go on vacation.

On Friday, teachers and parents plan to walk from the district's seven school sites to Headquarters at 4350 Otay Mesa Road, San Ysidro.

The walks will start around 9:00 a.m.

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