Lack of Strikes Would Be No Surprise
According to 7 to 7, none of the teachers’ unions in the eight districts that are currently without (or soon to be without) contracts are planning to strike:
With Rhode Island schools scheduled to start opening next week, teacher unions in eight districts have not signed new contracts — including Providence, the state’s largest district, with 26,000 students and 2,100 teachers.
Contracts in Burrillville, East Greenwich, Exeter-West Greenwich, New Shoreham, Providence and Tiverton are due to expire Aug. 31. Teacher contracts in Jamestown and the Ponaganset regional district shared by Foster and Glocester expired June 30. …
So far, no district is threatening to strike. Representatives of the state’s two teacher unions, the National Education Association of Rhode Island and Rhode Island Federation of Teachers, say they think teachers will report to work as usual, even if a new contract is not in place by the time school starts, although they emphasized that decision is up to individual districts.
Putting aside the fact that teacher strikes are illegal, with the state flat-funding schools and the public mood increasingly hostile to the status quo, it would be unwise to pick highly visible fights, just now. Of course, I can’t speak to the possibility that school committees aren’t pressing this negotiating advantage hard enough.