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North Suburban Teachers’ Strike Ends After One Day

Teachers at Prairie Grove School District 46 celebrate after reaching a tentative contract agreement with the district on Oct. 12, 2012. (Credit: CBS)

Teachers at Prairie Grove School District 46 celebrate after reaching a tentative contract agreement with the district on Oct. 12, 2012. (Credit: CBS)

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Updated 10/12/12 – 5:07 p.m.

CHICAGO (CBS) — A teachers’ strike at Prairie Grove School District 46, in that suburb and part of Crystal Lake, has ended after just one missed day of school.

“We have a tentative agreement that we’ll take to our members next week,” teacher Kathy Krepel said. “After we ratify it, [the district will] vote on it.”

CBS 2’s Dorothy Tucker sat in on contract talks on Friday, and explains how they reached a deal so quickly.

Pressure from the parents, who stood outside the building and shouted for an end to the strike, and sat in on Friday’s contract talks, sent a message to both sides that they wanted the strike over.

Their presence was why teachers were jubilant after learning the strike was over Friday afternoon.

Teachers in District 46 had been working without a contract for 22 months, and went on strike late Thursday night.

After the union met with the school board and a federal mediator for about seven hours on Thursday, parents demanded that they be allowed to sit in and listen to negotiations.

After seven more hours of contract talks on Friday, the teachers and the board reached a tentative deal, and parents made the difference.

“I believe that, if we weren’t in there … that we’d still be on strike,” parent Diana Freund said.

Teachers would not share details of the agreement, which still must be ratified by 75 teachers who had gone on strike.

District 46 has about 900 students, who missed classes on Friday because of the strike. But school will reopen on Monday now that a tentative deal has been reached.