LAUSD teachers strike: Bargaining talks ongoing, Day 5 of strike to continue Friday

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- The United Teachers Los Angeles union announced Thursday that bargaining talks with the L.A. Unified School District are ongoing, and Day 5 of the teachers strike will continue as planned Friday.

The new round of talks resumed at noon at City Hall and was mediated by L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti.

"We should be aware that we've been at this for 21 months, and there are some very fundamental issues that there are key differences on," said UTLA President Alex Caputo-Pearl. "So an agreement is not going to take shape overnight, it's not going to be a quick and easy process, but today, there's been good and hard work done on that."

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United Teachers Los Angeles officials announce at a press conference that while bargaining talks remains, Day 5 of the teachers strike will continue.

The teachers union said that as for what's happening at the bargaining table, Garcetti asked them not to discuss the details.

LAUSD teacher strike: Guide for parents

The union confirmed that it is still getting ready for a big demonstration at 10:30 a.m. Friday at Grand Park to show support for teachers as the strike and bargaining talks continue. Musicians Aloe Blacc and Tom Morello are among other celebrities expected to attend the support rally at Grand Park.

In the meantime, thousands of LAUSD teachers hit the streets for a fourth day in a row while braving the rain.

The strike is affecting nearly 600,000 students. Schools remain open, but LAUSD reports less than 84,000 students were in class.

LAUSD teachers strike: Everything you need to know

By the end of the strike's fourth day, the district said it lost $97 million in state revenue payments that are based on student attendance.

Nearly 20 children from Encino Elementary School are being home-schooled. Parents are taking turns teaching kids at their homes, as well as supporting teachers in what they call their "Strike School."

Reducing class size has been a major sticking point in negotiations, as well as having more nurses and counselors in schools and higher pay. The LAUSD and the teachers union have been trying to get a new contract for two years with no success.

The school district says it can't afford to do everything the union is demanding but the union disagrees.

"What we need to do is work with the union to get more resources, you know, it's a funding issue: the lower class sizes, we want to hire new teachers. Our offer right now is to bring in 1,300 more employees to lower class size, bring nurses and counselors. To do more, we need commitment from the union to work collectively toward getting more money from Sacramento," explained Nick Melvoin of the LAUSD.
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