Teachers wanted smaller class size, fewer imposed meetings and more time spent with kids. In Washington, public employees are not allowed to strike. Judge Darvis tried to force teachers back to work with $200/day fines. Darvis accused teachers of "disrespect for the court" and of "setting a bad example for students."
But Kent administrators said smaller classes were too expensive, given the district's budget constraints, and that spending its reserve fund on smaller classes, as the union wanted it to do, would be irresponsible. Although the strike left many families scrambling for child care, growing numbers of parents nonetheless supported the teachers, rallying on their behalf and standing with them on picket lines. (Seattle Times)