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Teachers strike ends after 15 days, contract agreement reached

South+teacher+Ryan+Normandin+delivers+a+speech+announcing+the+end+of+the+Newton+Teachers+Association+%28NTA%29+strike%2C+Friday%2C+Feb.+2.
Gabe Kolodner
South teacher Ryan Normandin delivers a speech announcing the end of the Newton Teachers Association (NTA) strike, Friday, Feb. 2.

Today, Friday, Feb. 2, the strike led by the Newton Teachers Association (NTA) has officially ended as the union and Newton School Committee’s bargaining teams reached a contract agreement on the fifteenth day of protests.

“Thank you to each other for holding the line, holding each other, and holding our students in our hearts this entire time,” said Ryan Normandin, a South teacher and member of the NTA negotiating team. 

The final contract came after two weeks of disagreement and 11 missed school days. Students will return to their classrooms Monday, Feb. 5.

The parties reached tentative agreements on matters including increased Cost of Living Adjustments (COLA), a parental leave period of 60 days with 40 days paid, and higher wages for Unit C members. According to Normandin, the new contract also guarantees the presence of social workers in schools, providing mental health support for students.

According to a statement issued by Mayor Ruthanne Fuller, the entire committee and union membership will vote to approve the tentative agreements early next week.

Normandin said, “Even though the past weeks have been hard, we need them to make the next years easy. We fought tooth and nail for the schools that our students’ families and educators deserve.”

Normandin announced the contractual agreement at the Education Center, where members of the negotiations team exited the building chanting, “When we fight, we win.”

According to Mike Zilles, NTA President, “We cannot be beaten, we are the Newton Public Schools. There is no title that I could ever be more proud of to wear than ‘teacher.’”

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Leah Ziskin, Arts managing Editor
Leah Ziskin is currently a sophomore at Newton North. Outside of school she participates in plays and musicals and overall loves theater. She also enjoys baking, listening to Taylor Swift, and reading mystery novels. Leah also loves watching TV, movies, and musicals. Her favorite TV show is Anne with an E, her favorite movie is Knives Out, and her favorite musical is Wicked. Leah has had a passion for writing ever since she was very young. Her favorite school subjects are English and History. She is excited to be a part of the team for Volume 101 of the Newtonite!
Gabe Kolodner, Photo manager
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