Portland teachers union members block traffic, march on Burnside Bridge in Portland

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Members of the Portland Association of Teachers are marching Tuesday morning in support of striking Portland teachers.

PORTLAND, Ore. — A large group of demonstrators, made up of members of the Portland Association of Teachers (PAT) and their allies, blocked traffic and walked across the Burnside Bridge in Portland on Tuesday morning.

The group stopped in the middle of the bridge for about 15 minutes before continuing their march. As of about 9 a.m., the bridge was clear and cars were starting to drive across.

According to a post on the PAT Facebook page, the group met at the union offices on Northeast 8th Avenue in Portland Tuesday at 7:30 a.m. and started to march at 8 a.m. The march is in support of striking Portland teachers.

Educators, families, community supporters–join us as we march to win transformational change for our schools! 7:30 AM at 345 NE 8th!

Posted by Portland Association of Teachers on Monday, November 20, 2023

The Portland teachers strike began Nov. 1. On Monday morning, the PAT said school board members for Portland Public Schools (PPS) rejected a tentative agreement, a claim the district disputed during a news conference.

PPS officials said they believed a deal was “very, very close” and on Monday afternoon, submitted a new counter-proposal to the PAT for review and consideration. The district told KGW that through the mediator, PAT rejected their counter-proposal Monday night and as of Tuesday morning, the union has not issued a counter-proposal.

District officials said the main obstacle remains parent involvement in class-size committees. According to the district, PAT has not given them any kind of counter re-entry plan, and PPS said this contract needs to include a resolution on how instruction days will be made up.

This is a developing story and may be updated as more information is made available.

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