Teaching Profession

Striking Detroit Teachers Ignore Judge’s Order To Go Back to Work

By Vaishali Honawar — September 11, 2006 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

Teachers in Detroit continued to picket today in defiance of a judge’s order demanding they go back to school, throwing into uncertainty an administration plan to reopen schools tomorrow.

“An overwhelming majority of our teachers did not show up to work,” said Lekan Oguntoyinbo, a spokesman for the district, adding that the reopening of the schools, slated for Tuesday, is now “in flux.” He said the district might return to court tomorrow to ask the judge to hold the teachers in contempt.

Negotiations between the two sides continued Monday, as the strike entered its 15th day.

Schools in Detroit opened Sept. 5 for a half day before closing indefinitely after just 27,000 of the expected 120,000 students showed up.

On Sept. 8, Wayne County Circuit Court Judge Susan Borman ordered striking teachers back to work. She said she believed district officials, who testified that students were leaving city schools for suburban and charter schools, further hurting the district’s financial situation. The school system is grappling with a $105 million budget shortfall in its $1.4 billion budget for 2006-07.

In a statement released today, schools Superintendent William F. Coleman III said the administration’s latest proposal to the teachers includes a wage increase in the second and third years of the contract, adding up to a total of 3.5 percent.

The district had originally asked teachers to take a 5.5 percent pay cut, but teachers want a 5 percent increase each year over the next three years.

“Although the parties are apart, we are not far apart. We believe we have made significant progress over the last two and a half weeks,” Mr. Coleman said.

Meanwhile, Gov. Jennifer M. Granholm, a Democrat, has indicated that if the two sides fail to reach a decision by 6 p.m. today, she will send in the Michigan Employment Relations Commission to help sort out their differences.


This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
IT Infrastructure & Management Webinar
From Chaos to Clarity: How to Master EdTech Management and Future-Proof Your Evaluation Processes
The road to a thriving educational technology environment is paved with planning, collaboration, and effective evaluation.
Content provided by Instructure
Special Education Live Online Discussion A Seat at the Table - Special Education: Proven Interventions for Academic Success
Special education should be a launchpad, not a label. Join the conversation on how schools can better support ALL students.
Special Education K-12 Essentials Forum Innovative Approaches to Special Education
Join this free virtual event to explore innovations in the evolving landscape of special education.

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Teaching Profession Teachers Are Pushing for Paid Parental Leave. How It's Going
Efforts to implement paid parental leave policies are slowly gaining traction, with teachers often advocating on their own behalf.
7 min read
Image of a pregnant person at work.
Teaching Profession In Their Own Words Cellphones Turned My Teaching Career From 'Awesome' to Exhausting
A former high school teacher shares how his students' increasing reliance on cellphones drove him out of the classroom.
5 min read
Mitchell Rutherford, who taught biology at Sahuaro High School in Tucson, Ariz., left the profession due, in part, to students' cell phone usage. Here, pictured at Finger Rock Trailhead in Tucson on June 8, 2024.
Mitchell Rutherford, who taught biology at Sahuaro High School in Tucson, Ariz., left the profession due, in part, to students' cell phone usage. Here, pictured at Finger Rock Trailhead in Tucson on June 8, 2024.
Cassidy Araiza for Education Week
Teaching Profession Teachers’ Unions Are Gaining Ground in a State That Once Forbade Them
With unions now representing educators in its largest district, Virginia is seeing a labor resurgence.
7 min read
Image of a folder and a signed agreement.