Hundreds of teachers rally for better benefits, contracts

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) –  Tuesday afternoon hundreds of Columbus City Schools teachers lined State Street in front of the Board of Education to make their voices heard.

Greg Mild, Columbus Education Association Union spokesperson, said teachers are asking for better benefits.

“We really need the board, the board members to get involved and get at the table and settle this,” said Mild.

Mild wouldn’t say what those “better benefits” were exactly.

“The association has been ready to negotiate for months, and we are yet to have a contract and the school year starts in six days  We want to put this behind us. Our teachers want to get back into our classrooms and greet our students with a great year ahead,” said Mild.

None of the teachers would speak to NBC4 on camera, but Philip Calloway came in support of his wife who teaches at Forest Park Elementary.

“They deserve a better contract. They do a lot with what they have. They deserve more,” said Calloway.

The current teacher contract will renew on the first day of school.  As far as this new one, Mild said time will tell if the board agrees to the new terms.

NBC4 did request an on-camera interview with the Columbus Board of Education.  They chose to send this statement instead, which read in part:

“Representatives of Columbus City Schools and the Columbus Education Association continue to meet at the call of a federal mediator, with substantial progress and conceptual agreement on most issues. Talks with the teachers’ union will have no impact on the start of school next Wednesday…”

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