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Teachers at Ohio's largest school district strike on 1st day of school

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Posted at 8:59 AM, Aug 24, 2022

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Teachers in Ohio's largest school district will be marked absent on the first day of the new school year.

For the first time since 1975, more than 4,000 teachers and other education professionals in Columbus City Schools district are hitting the picket lines.

On Sunday, 94% of the Columbus Education Association union members voted to strike after rejecting the school board's "last, best and final offer," the union said on Twitter.

On Aug. 11, the union stated in its notice of intent to strike examples of why they were going on strike, which included smaller class sizes, full-time art, music, and P.E. teachers at the elementary schools, and functioning heating and air-conditioning in classrooms.

District officials said the school year would start on Wednesday, with students taking classes online. CNN reported that substitutes would lead the classes.

"We know this is not ideal, but we have an obligation to continue educating and supporting students despite the current circumstances," the district said in a statement.

The district said in a news release that the two sides are slated to meet Wednesday afternoon after a federal mediator called for both parties to resume bargaining.

According to the Associated Press, the district has 47,000 students.