LAUSD teachers, district in court as strike nears

While many would've like to see a deal done today, there were no negotiations to avoid a teachers' strike Tuesday. Instead, both sides were inside the LA County courthouse in downtown as the district sought an injunction to prevent the strike from happening.

LAUSD alleges it was not given the contractually required 10-day notice before Thursday's potential strike. However, there was no ruling on the injunction Tuesday, paving the way for the strike to begin.

Concerned parents spoke to reporters alongside representatives from United Teachers Los Angeles outside the LA Unified School District's headquarters. Many of them showcased a large, full-page advertisement the Union paid for and published in Tuesday's LA Times.

The Union wants a 6.5% salary increase across the board with increased investment in terms of more counselors, nurses, librarians, and other support staff. The school district is offering only a flat 6% increase. And while the district proposed adding 1,000 new staffers during Monday's failed bargaining session, the Union rejected that offer saying it barely amounts to 1 per school.

With 600,000 students feeling the potential impact, LA Mayor Eric Garcetti emphasized that's where the focus should be.

"And as I've looked at both sides, there's not a lot that separates them," said the Mayor. "People want lower class sizes, fair pay, and support in our schools. And if I can be a voice to continue to push people to sit down and be at the table -- even if they're fighting about what day or whether there can be a strike for a day or two -- that's not the most important thing. The most important thing is that we get a deal done so that kids aren't out of school for a long period of time."

In case a strike does happen, the school board voted Tuesday to allow parent volunteers to help in schools without undergoing full, federal background checks. LAUSD say volunteers would, however, be checked against a national sex offender registry.

Another bargaining session is scheduled for Wednesday morning.