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Teachers Vote to Return to Jobs in Detroit

September 20, 1987|From Associated Press

Teachers in Detroit voted Saturday to return to work Monday and hold classes on Tuesday, while negotiations resumed in Chicago in an effort to end a 12-day teachers' strike there.

Around the nation, strikes by more than 35,000 teachers still affected more than 500,000 students in Illinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Washington state.

Members of the Detroit Federation of Teachers voted by acclamation Saturday to return to work, and planned to vote on a tentative agreement reached Thursday night later in the week, union member Denise Irwin said.

The union's 11,500 members, who struck on Aug. 31, will return to work Monday, and classes for 193,000 students will begin on Tuesday, Irwin said. Teachers will probably vote on the contract Thursday or Friday, she added.

Three-Year Agreement

The three-year agreement calls for a 6.5% pay increase in the first year, 7% in the second and 6% in the third. Increases in the final two years are linked to increased revenues coming to the district through tax increases or other sources.

Annual pay for Detroit teachers ranges from $19,963 to $36,222.

Two of the five Detroit school board members voted against the proposed contract, saying that the district has a $27-million deficit and could not afford it.

Negotiations resumed in Chicago amid stepped-up pressure from parents, but the two sides remained at odds.

The union is seeking a 10% pay raise this year and a 5% increase next year for the district's 24,000 teachers and more than 5,000 other school board employees. The board says it cannot afford raises.

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