Rally Urges Strongsville Teachers to Cross Picket Lines

Residents gather on City Commons Friday for counter-strike event


A group of Strongsville residents rallied on the City Commons Friday afternoon, calling for striking teachers to cross the picket lines and get back to their classrooms.

"We want to encourage the teachers to get back to school, to accept the contract and get past this," said Paul Komarek, who organized the rally. "We want the teachers to cross the picket lines."

Komarek, a former Strongsville resident who created a Facebook page to spread his message, said he believes the contract the Strongsville School Board is offering is fair, and said the strike "is really embarassing the community at this point."

"The union needs to stop all the intimidation and bullying because it's hurting our students," he said.

A rotating group of parents, students and concerned taxpayers stood at the corner of Royalton and Pearl roads from 3-7 p.m., holding signs and cheering as motorists honked their support.

Jackie Litz, whose grand-nieces and grand-nephew attend Strongville schools, said she and her husband are physically unable to stand with the ralliers, so instead she brought them fresh-baked muffins.

"These teachers are paid more than most others in the state," Litz said. "Their behavior is setting a very bad example."

While only three teachers are known to have crossed picket lines since the strike began two weeks ago, Komarek said he knows of nearly a dozen others who want to cross but are "afraid of repercussions."

He said the rallies will continue from 4-7 p.m. every Saturday until the strike is over.

UPDATED SATURDAY, MARCH 16: Negotiations Set for Sunday in Teachers' Strike

Meanwhile, the Strongsville Education Association has set a press conference for 12:30 p.m. on Saturday at the North Eastern Ohio Education Association offices in Garfield Heights.

The SEA asked all five school board members to attend a negotiating session on Saturday, but Board President David Frazee said the district's negotiating team will meet only when a federal mediator calls for a session. 

The SEA, in a statement, called that "stall tactics," and SEA President Tracy Linscott said "the board is refusing to negotiate."

The SEA and supporters held a rally on the Commons last Friday afternoon.

Related stories:

Teachers' Strike in Strongsville Day 12: Attendance is Up in Schools; Rally Set for Friday

No Progress in Strongsville Teachers' Strike

'Scab' Posters Turn Up Near Teacher's Home

Parents Want to Make Classrooms 'Happier'

Teachers' Strike Day 1: Picket Lines in Strongsville

Strongsville Teachers Vote to Strike

A Few Teachers Cross Picket Line; One Teacher Says She was Hit By Car

No New Talks Set in Teachers' Strike; Sides Still Far Apart

Second Striking Teacher is Charged

Strongsville Teachers Shout at Subs as They Apply to Replace Them

Strongsville Teachers Won't Honor Subs' Grades During Strike

School Board Files Unfair Labor Practice Charge Against Teachers' Union

Teachers' Union Criticizes School Board for Truancy Policy

200 Subs Now in Strongsville Schools

Picketer Arrested for Blocking Driveway

Strongsville AP Students Aren't Letting Strike Stop Their Learning

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CandidResident March 16, 2013 at 12:48 PM
If you want to compare crowds. The Stickland rally totalled about three times the people you had at your hug rally. I heard the Channel 5 comment and fell on the floor laughing. The only people I honked at driving by were the teacher supporters and the Mr. Hero guy further down on Pearl.
CandidResident March 16, 2013 at 12:53 PM
Thank you for interviewing with us today Mr. Pepple. The board has one question: Can you say "no?" Great. How much will it cost us to have you say "no?" $250 an hour? Great. You're hired.
Lisa Dynda March 16, 2013 at 01:00 PM
Dave I agree with you. When I found out the PTA was on their wall of shame because parents helped out in the classroom and used their own money to bring in donuts for the entire staff (principal, secretary, aides, monitors and subs etc.) I was shocked. Why would you alienate the people who have helped you so much in the past? Is it true they want the PTA to be disbanded when they come back? And then to target small business owners (ex. Goldies) on their wall of shame because he wouldn't let them use his bathroom. Disgraceful!! Now they are targeting another small business owner that has done so much for our community. How many groups of people are you going to anger and how much more support can you lose for the schools and our kids by these childish actions?
CandidResident March 16, 2013 at 01:03 PM
SvilleRes - Putting up with whiny people? Is that how the almighty board views the people they serve? Well, after viewing several board meetings, I suppose you're right. They have no use for the very people they are working for. I'm happy to hear you're an attorney. I was going to comment on how ridiculous the rest of your post was, but not I understand.
SweetChuck March 16, 2013 at 01:14 PM
Candid, I've been monitoring this board for quite awhile and you may be the biggest hypocrite I've ever seen. You insult those who post regularly as "having no life," but you seem to be posting double the amount of what everyone else is. You critique how many people were at a last minute student/parent rally, yet the SEA rally that had actual meetings to plan for it didn't even have enough people to cover the amount of striking teachers. You are also seem to have an extreme dislike for anyone living in Waterford Crossing, as someone else has pointed out previously. Did your house foreclose there or something and you are bitter with the women who still live there? Maybe if you stop hating on everyone that has things you obviously cannot afford or do not have the ability to attain on your own, you would actually get away from your computer enough to enjoy life and stop talking about Waterford crossing, how much better the other rally was than the parents and how hard the people at Channel 5 were laughing. You literally sound like a pathetic, sad freshman in high school, more concerned with gossiping and bringing those more successful than you down than actually doing anything for yourself.
ashleigh March 16, 2013 at 01:15 PM
As a PTA member, both as a teacher and a parent, be thankful for them. Yes, you have paid your dues. Teachers, you pay maybe $5 a year; in return, you get teacher appreciation week, you get fed during your conferences, etc. That is a deal for $5. Students receive scholarships opportunities, fun nights, winter wonderlands, etc. Thank your PTA instead of bringing them into this BIG mess.
Tad Taderson March 16, 2013 at 01:36 PM
Its called class envy and its a bad thing to have. In a Country that rewards hard work, having it, is generally a sign that someone is ignoring the fact they are lazy. Another bad characteristic.
lyn March 16, 2013 at 01:39 PM
This C / Candid fella jumps from article to article asking the same question and then answers himself and provides no valid backup but some worthless flyer put out by the SEA/OEA. Any data ever presented that is legit ALWAYS provides reference to where one can easily find that same info - not some, oh its out there if you also want it. He and himself started this- CandidResident @ 1:06 pm on Thursday, March 14, 2013 - "I suppose the promise was null and void once they started giving all those salary increases and bonuses to the administrators the past four years." lyn @ 1:10 pm on Thursday, March 14, 2013 - "Candid -Be specific so we can see what increases individuals received. Don't just make a blanket statement. State MR. X made $$$$ now makes $$$$" NO REPLY He jumps over to another article and starts up again. CandidResident @ 4:54 pm on Thursday, March 14, 2013 "I know the administration didn't take any cuts. Unless someone wants to claim the hundreds of thousands of dollars in increases and bonuses over the past four years is a mirage." No one seems too interested in this guy Candid, so lets try "C"-......
lyn March 16, 2013 at 01:40 PM
So C starts at 9:10, answering himself 10 times over the next hour on different articles, with that same question - yeah,anyone see the figures; what about that $400,000,... What a jerk -He has never said anything worthwhile and then goes out and uploads for Kim L. the worthless flyer with numbers on it. I guess he wanted some attention. Is this a teacher that thinks this is the proper way to provide a source for material you present in class. Is that what teachers are now teaching? Maybe we all should print up flyers and upload them also and say they are factual because we got the info from someplace that you should accept as fact - but no, I won't provide a link for you to verify.
StrongsvilleMother March 16, 2013 at 01:47 PM
I had not heard that about the PTA. That is crazy and is a big mistake. The PTA has announced several times that they will remain neutral. Besides, PTA stands for parent/teacher association. Right now the PTA should support the teachers in the classrooms trying to teach our children under miserable conditions. When will our striking teachers realize they are replaceable. The PTA doesn't exist just for them. For a group that claims to be all about the kids, all of their actions demonstrate otherwise. Besides, those union idiots have no idea who is paying for the supplies or donuts. I took supplies myself, that I paid for, into my child's classroom and will continue to do so that her teachers can teach. Period. You guys need to really get over yourselves. Actions have consequences. Even our kids get that message.
Tracy Smith March 16, 2013 at 02:41 PM
Candid your mental midget side is showing again "flaming metrosexual". Next weekend may have some challenges with Spring Break, yes sorry Candid I would rather use our extra income to take my family on a vacation than give it to the teachers. In our house it is about the kids
jw93 March 16, 2013 at 03:21 PM
You crack me up, Candid. Now the teacher salary info is fake? A right wing conspiracy? Even Linscott isn't running around making that claim. Gee, I'd like to believe you when you say that the administrators are all billionaires, but you seem to have an agenda, so I'm hesitant. By the way, still no answer from you or Sad or any others who share your viewpoint. Why is it again that we can't just compensate the public teachers similarly to those in Strongsville private schools?
jw93 March 16, 2013 at 03:42 PM
Nailed it, Candid. The biggest travesty in all this isn't the strain on the community, the fact that the teachers choose to stand around outside instead of doing their jobs, the fact that our city has become a national joke because of the antics of said teachers, but that an attorney is getting paid during a contract negotiation. It's like you get all of your talking points from Ed Schultz.
StrongDad March 16, 2013 at 03:50 PM
Isn't it ironic that when a teacher sleeps with a student or a parent attacks a teacher's credentials who they run to for support----the Board attorney!!
Carol Witherow March 16, 2013 at 03:52 PM
To answer your 2 questions--1) The Board does not get any bonuses. Most Boards are compensated per meeting, and the amount is minimal. 2) As far as using an attorney for negotiations--all districts do it. The OEA reps that negotiate for the SEA are either attorneys or trained negotiators. School districts would get killed (talk about giving away the store!) if they went in without an attorney. I know these things because I am a retired educator who has negotiated on both sides of the table.
StrongDad March 16, 2013 at 03:59 PM
My St Patty Day prediction is the SEA will sign an agreement tomorrow night regardless of the terms. They will spin it to the sheep in the Union to make it appear that they fought so hard for "working condition" changes when reality is they received nothing except continuation of great health insurance and high pay. (mortgages are coming due---need a paycheck!) Tracy and Mr. Pepple will be seen at Buca Di Beppo in the Pope room having dinner. Meatball anyone?
lyn March 16, 2013 at 04:00 PM
SHADY does use different names.
lyn March 16, 2013 at 04:07 PM
Strong Dad- They will want to sign before spring break for sure! Otherwise, school won't start until the following Tuesday - much more pay and benefits to miss. But, I'm sure during the next contract we'll hear this again - "we were made promises last time!" and "we made many concessions in the past so we are due".
Greg Pappo March 16, 2013 at 05:00 PM
Tracy, quit hiding behind false name Candid Resident. you are a fat pig!!! and let the teachers have a private vote.. we know they want to cross. the only one's that want to hold out are the one's who will be retiring soon. they don't care about the rest.
Strongsville School Mom March 16, 2013 at 06:40 PM
Really, again another example of everything you see in print must be true. I was around with a video camera right behind those people. Don't seem to have any rude remarks from the people supporting the kids, only from the other side. Just like the kids driving by in a car (high school kids) flipping us off. I know who they are. Just another example of spinning.
Strongsville School Mom March 16, 2013 at 06:44 PM
Nicely said. And you are correct, it was a good turnout for the time we had to plan it being not union and all. Didn't have the chance to go to all the other unions and get them here for us. Oops, that's right, don't think they would get compensated to show up.
Strongsville School Mom March 16, 2013 at 06:47 PM
I would still like to know about these "working conditions" that Tracy keeps talking about. Didn't we just pass a levy to build a new junior high school? How come nobody especially the media when they have Tracy on camera will not ask that question?
Strongsville School Mom March 16, 2013 at 06:49 PM
Anybody ever go into the high school and check out the teacher's mezzanine upstairs. Really nice place, maybe the temps are off by a degree and that is what is meant by "working conditions"
Sammie M. March 16, 2013 at 07:08 PM
I am so saddened by the constant denigration of the teachers involved in this horrible strike. I have yet to see one logical argument against the strike. Only constant name calling and belittling. A community's teachers are the future of the community. You trust your most precious possession to them, in many cases for more waking hours of the day than you are with them. Yet you berate them, call them names, and treat them with absolutely no respect. Have you even really tried to learn why they are on strike? Have you even looked into the behavior of the board? Why are you so quick to blame the teachers? I just don't understand. This strike will be over one day and you will be left with a broken community, with teachers filled with resentment towards parents and administrators, not because they didn't "win" in the strike, but because of the hatred you have shown them. Why? And, no, I'm not a teacher and I don't live in Strongsville. Just an observer with nothing but respect for our teachers AND our school administrators.
Strongsville School Mom March 16, 2013 at 07:55 PM
Why do you group everyone together. Not everyone is name calling and belittling the teachers. However when you have some of these teachers doing what you just described "name calling and treating people with no respect" and some of this has been caught on tape. Go to the news footage of the first day where the teachers were at the high school and turn up your volume on your computer and listen to what some not all were saying. My friend works at the admin. offices and keeps getting called a scab and much more (swear words) that I won't put on here. She is in a union (not a teacher) and they do this to her everyday. I like many of the teachers in the system but not all are wonderful. The ones that are not are protected by this wonderful union. I as a parent have gone round and round with some of them to no avail. The good ones have my respect and I have told them how much I appreciate them. They might spend a lot of time with my child but so do I and I have to help wih her homework and studying for test. She is my last child in school (had two others) and I have put in many hours helping them all with homework, studying, projects and so on which I did not mind at all. I have been to some meetings, looked into both sides offers and have come to a conclusion that their offer is a good one.
Mark Kylemore March 16, 2013 at 07:58 PM
Sammie You are wrong on several fronts. It is the strikers who have shown hatred to this community after years of making them one of the highest paid districts in Ohio. It's a free market, let them take their talents elsewhere. Where is it written or guaranteed that we have to pay them at levels they demand. You are truly the fool as it is some of the strikers, including Tracy the buffoon who have resorted to tactics that have turned this community against them. Lets clean the slate and bring in some new young, hungry talent.
Terri March 16, 2013 at 08:58 PM
Amazed citizen - Actually, I was there, holding a sign (in the rain). And, I counted at least 80 participants on the side of the students & taxpayers (more continued to arrive after I quit counting). There were a total of six on the "Educator" side - it turns out that those individuals were not even from Strongsville. We know that because we spoke to them. Why is it that every time the weather isn't favorable, these striking "Educators" seem to disappear? Why don't you stop the insults & take time to discover the facts. Your antics diminish your argument.
Q March 16, 2013 at 10:11 PM
Huh? What did I do? Say?
Michael March 17, 2013 at 03:18 AM
Sammie near as I can figure you must actually be a Strongsville teacher as only a teacher would talk like you did in this forum. Only teachers hiding behind fake pseudonyms are speaking kindly of our beloved teachers in this forum for the past 2 weeks. Prior to March 4, 2013 I believe I can speak for all Strongsville residents in saying we respected and appreciated our 380 teachers. As of March 4th however they became gluttonous greedy disgusting and despicable and they're true colors rose to the top. As it turns out some of them don't care about the children they teach and money and benefits and shorter work days are more important to them. I've said it before and I'll say it again; I can live with their salary as I'm sure they earn it same as everyone else does but their Rolls Royce benefits and retirement package is just too unfair to the average private sector employee who pays $1000's more dollars annually for less benefits. And they can talk all they want about the hours they work. WE all work 50 hour weeks and we do it 50 weeks a year not 40
Mark Kylemore March 17, 2013 at 03:24 AM
Well said Rich, could not have said it better.


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