No classes Monday as Seattle teachers’ strike continues to delay start of school year

SEATTLE — The start of the school year continues to be delayed for almost 50,000 students in the state’s largest school district. School officials announced Sunday that there will be no school on Monday after members of the teachers’ union failed to reach an agreement with Seattle Public Schools.

“There will be no school on Monday, Sept. 12, for all grades including preschool and kindergarten,” a message sent to families in the district reads in part. “Seattle Public Schools and Seattle Education Association are making progress on negotiations but have not yet reached an agreement. We continue to bargain and remain ready to start school as soon as an agreement is reached.”

Teachers in the Seattle Education Association said the major sticking points of their strike are that they want more support for special and multilingual education, smaller class sizes and competitive pay.

The district provided an update on negotiations on Saturday, saying that bargaining teams had an “extremely productive weekend.”

“Seattle Public Schools (SPS) and Seattle Education Association (SEA) are making good progress on negotiations. The bargaining teams are working late into the evening. We are optimistic an agreement will be reached so our students can begin school as soon as possible,” Beverly Redmond, SPS assistant superintendent of public affairs, said in a statement. “SPS and SEA share the goal of getting students back in classrooms. We understand the challenges placed on students and families when schools are closed. Once we arrive at a resolution, we look forward to sharing that news with our school community.”

The district originally said it would notify families by 3 p.m. Friday if classes would be canceled for Monday, but officials later said a decision for a Monday start would come over the weekend.

Six Boys & Girls Clubs across Seattle are offering free full-day programming during the strike, but only for families who are currently enrolled, and most clubs are already at capacity.

The Boys & Girls Club said that its Rotary Club would accept new kids if the strike continues. For more information on how to sign up, click here.

The city will also offer Recreation Activity Hubs at eight designated community centers starting on Monday.

Students in kindergarten through sixth grade will have access to free recreational programs and activities.

Registration for the Recreation Activity Hubs is now open on the Seattle Parks and Recreation website.