Teachers Stage Sickout Over Contract Dispute

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Frustrated with contract negotiations, 42 of the 56 teachers at Santa Ynez Valley Union High School called in sick and forced the school to close Monday.

Signs of the one-day job action appeared Sunday with sick calls placed to the 1,100-student school's voicemail system.

Pay is the main issue in the contract dispute. Although most districts in Santa Barbara County have settled contracts, Santa Ynez is still wrangling over this year's salaries.

Teachers want a 6.9% wage increase. They have been offered a 2.5% bonus, while many districts gave teachers 10% increases.

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