A group of teachers in Massachusetts remain on strike as schools in Newton, Massachusetts, have been closed for over a week and the striking teachers plan to gather at different bars and restaurants in the area.
The teachers are under fire for what an opponent of the strike, Fran Yerardi, described to a local Boston NBC News outlet as a “pub crawl,” as they planned four events at different restaurants and bars in Newton.
“If you’re not doing everything you can to put kids in school, you should be ashamed of yourselves,” Yerardi told the media outlet.
The Newton Teachers Association (NTA) said in a statement that the events were scheduled outside of teaching hours.
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“There are social events scheduled outside of our contractual teaching hours to allow members to process — and be together inside, in the warmth, away from the rain, cold and snow we’ve experienced over the last 12 days,” the union told NBC.
Newton families went to court on Monday to call for an end to the strike at their kid’s schools.
Lital Asher-Dotan, a mother of three, filed an emergency motion to Intervene with the Middlesex Superior Court to compel the NTA to end its ongoing strike due to “detrimental effects of this strike on [the students’] education, extracurricular activities, and overall well-being.”
“The lack of structured learning and continuity severely hamper their progress, as regular practice is vital for retaining and understanding new concepts,” the motion stated.
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“The academic and developmental losses the proposed student intervenors are facing extend far beyond the classroom. Moreover, it is the interruption which is a crucial unrecoverable loss. Merely tacking some school days at the end of the school year does not address that,” the motion continued.
The strike began on Jan. 19. and the NTA met with the Newton School Committee on Sunday to negotiate an end to the strike, but no agreement was reached.
It is illegal for teachers to strike in the state of Massachusetts. The NTA has previously faced court-imposed fines totaling $425,000 along with additional fees of $50,000 per day.
The Newton Teachers Association reacted to the motion in a statement to Fox News Digital.
“The NTA has spent every moment of this strike trying to reopen schools. But we can no longer accept working conditions that put students at risk or are not meeting their needs. We cannot return to our jobs until a fair contract is settled.”
“Our goal all along is to get students back into the classrooms where learning thrives. Without aides and behavior therapists, many students cannot learn to the fullest. But at current wages offered by Newton, qualified individuals cannot afford to take those jobs. Similarly, without easy access to a social worker, a student’s mental health crisis can escalate. That is unacceptable,” the statement continued.
Fox News’ Lindsay Kornick contributed to this report.
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