Minneapolis teachers rally as Tuesday strike deadline nears

The Minneapolis Federation of Teachers President Greta Callahan told a rally of 100 supporters Sunday that stalled contract talks with Minneapolis Public Schools are “dangerous and put the district at risk” as a Tuesday morning strike deadline approaches.

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“For two years, we have been demoralized, we’ve watched our colleagues quit and flee this profession and families flee this district,” said Callahan. “And, we’re in here doing something about it and you’re out here doing something about it.”

Callahan told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS the three major sticking points in contract negotiations remain higher wages, smaller classroom sizes and more mental health professionals for students.

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“We refuse to let anything happen to our schools that are not going to create systemic change and they are not even pretending to avoid a strike right now in there,” said Callahan.

MPS administrators and school board members were unavailable for comment because contract talks were still underway Sunday night.

The St. Paul Federation of Teachers has also voted to authorize a Tuesday strike over similar contract demands.

Both school districts have not reported any progress on the weekend negotiations.