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by J.D. Davidson


A little more than two weeks from the first day of school for students, teachers in Ohio’s largest school district voted late Thursday night to authorize a 10-day strike notice.

With contract negotiations stalled, the Columbus Education Association voted to give its strike notice.

This allows it to file that notice with the State Employment Relations Board at any time. Students are scheduled to start school Aug. 24.

“The vote tonight is a vote of confidence in our bargaining team and our fight for the safe, properly maintained, fully resourced schools Columbus students deserve,” said Regina Fuentes, a spokeswoman for CEA. “CEA has consistently maintained that we are fighting not just for CEA members, but for our students and community. That is why CEA will continue that fight until a fair agreement is reached for the schools Columbus students deserve.”

State law requires a public employee union to provide 10 days advanced notice of an intention to picket, strike or any other refusal to work. A strike could come as soon as 10 days after filing with the SERB.

The union is asking for smaller class sizes, full-time art, music and physical education teachers at the elementary-school level, functioning heating and air-conditioning in classrooms, planning time at the elementary level and a cap on the number of class periods in a day.

“Of course, we don’t want to strike, but our students, teachers and community deserve a contract that supports and bolsters better learning conditions. Our vote tonight should send a strong message to the board to return to the bargaining table immediately,” Fuentes said.

The Columbus City Board of Education, in a statement, called a strike disruptive and harmful to students, more so after issues students were faced with over the past two years during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“The board’s offer is fair, comprehensive, and respectful, and we had hoped our teachers would carefully consider it,” the board’s statement read. “A strike is disruptive and hurts our students most, especially after everything they have experienced over the last few years. And that is why our team is well prepared for an alternate opening should a strike actually take place. Our students’ academic progress and social emotional well-being will remain our top priorities.”

Columbus City Schools has 47,000 students in 112 schools. It employs more than 9,000 teachers and staff.

– – –

An Ohio native, J.D. Davidson is a veteran journalist with more than 30 years of experience in newspapers in Ohio, Georgia, Alabama and Texas. He has served as a reporter, editor, managing editor and publisher. Davidson is a regional editor for The Center Square. 
Photo “Columbus City Schools” by Columbus City Schools.


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Astros: Alex Bregmans home run held signifcant meaning for Uvalde

On Uvalde Strong Day at Minute Maid Park, a young girl asked Astros third baseman Alex Bregman to hit a home run for the city and he came through.

The city of Uvalde, Texas is still mourning the tragic events of May 24 at Robb Elementary and the Houston Astros are doing their part to help where they can.

On Sunday, third baseman Alex Bregman met with fans from the city who were on hand at Minute Maid Park for Uvalde Strong Day. One young girl asked him to hit a home run. And Bregman made it happen without delay.

In the first inning, Bregman came to the plate and with his first swing smashed one 360 feet to left.

Welcome to Sunday Service.

— Houston Astros (@astros) August 14, 2022

You couldn’t have scripted a more meaningful moment for Bregman on an already emotional day at the ballpark.

Before the game a young girl from Uvalde asked Alex Bregman (@ABREG_1)to hit a home run & he did,helping the Astros win&win 1 for Uvalde on Uvalde Strong Day at MMP:”It was really cool, anything we can do for them. As soon as I got to the dugout Dusty said hey u hit 1 for Uvalde”

— Mark Berman (@MarkBermanFox26) August 14, 2022

“I’m glad they were here today. I think it’s really nice what the Astros have done to try and help the healing process,” Bregman said, adding that manager Dusty Baker pointed out how he “hit one for Uvalde” when he made it back to the dugout.

Alex Bregman delivered a meaningful home run on Uvalde Strong Day

The Astros bussed in 500 people from the town for Sunday’s Uvalde Strong Day.

.astros step up for Uvalde again. This time busing 500 hundred folks from there for Uvalde Strong Day at Minute Maid Park. Lance McCullers Jr, Alex Bregman and José Altuve are speaking to the group. The Astros Foundation, led by owner Jim Crane, visited Uvalde July 8

— Mark Berman (@MarkBermanFox26) August 14, 2022

They got to hear from players like Lance McCullers, Jose Altuve and Bregman before enjoying the game against the A’s.

Bregman drove in another run in the seventh with a double to right field. Altuve also had a two-run double in the second inning while Christian Vazquez added an RBI single in the sixth.

Cristian Javier went six innings giving up just one hit, though Oakland generated three late runs against Houston’s bullpen.

Baseball may be just a game, but for a community in mourning, it can provide a welcome escape for an afternoon. Bregman and the Astros made sure it was a day for celebrating as well as remembering.

Next: 3 players the Astros should target in the offseason

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