As the NJEA Review was going to press, the nearly 4,000 members of the Jersey City Education Association took a bold stand for economic justice, affordable health care and great public schools for Jersey City’s students and families. JCEA’s decision to go on strike on March 16 followed months of fruitless attempts by the local association to negotiate a successor agreement to the contract that expired on Aug. 31, 2017.
The strike lasted one school day before a tentative agreement was reached with the Jersey City Board of Education early in the evening on Sunday, March 18 after 13 hours of nonstop bargaining. School was scheduled to open that Monday with JCEA members returning to their schools to do what they do best: provide a great public education for the children of Jersey City.
JCEA members had been working under the terms of that expired agreement, which included onerous health care contributions that have led to most Jersey City educators seeing reductions in their take-home pay year after year. JCEA members demanded that the board of education recognize that those contribution levels are unsustainable and to work with the association to provide meaningful relief.
As of press time, details of the agreement had not yet been released, nor had a date for association and board ratification votes been scheduled. Visit njea.org for the latest information and look for more in the May edition of the NJEA Review.