Portland teachers, district sit down for contract talks

(KATU Photo)

School’s out for the summer, but the Portland teacher’s union is still working to push the district for new teacher contracts.

Monday was the first day of mediation between the two sides.

The Portland Association of Teachers says pay isn’t so much of an issue, but workloads are. That includes lesson planning for ever-growing class sizes.

“So we’re not far apart, necessarily, on the wages. The difference is that the district seems to think that paying us for our job is enough to remove any workload protections that we may have,” said Suzanne Cohen, president of the Portland Association of Teachers.

The district says growing workloads are just a reflection of the current era.

The union says teachers are preparing to strike in September, if necessary.

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