Hundreds of Oakland teachers union members who turned out to a meeting tonight voted to authorize its leadership to call a strike, once it’s legal.
The vote: 726 yes, 45 no.
The Oakland Education Association represents about 2,800 employees, including teachers, counselors and librarians, according to its Web site. If you round up to 800 participants (and if the 2,800 figure is accurate), voter participation comes to about 29 percent.
“It’s a real clear message to the bargaining team that they have the support of the membership,” said union President Betty Olson-Jones.
As I wrote in an earlier blog post, this doesn’t mean there will be a strike, and it could be weeks before the union can take such an action. But Olson-Jones has said she’s not optimistic the district will offer teachers a raise; the district’s chief financial officer has projected a deficit of nearly $40 million for 2010-11.
Next week, we learn more about how the new superintendent plans to make those cuts.