CHICAGO (CBS) — More than 2,500 high school students in northwest suburban McHenry have missed another day of classes, and won’t have their homecoming celebration this weekend, as a teachers’ strike stretched into its seventh day.
Negotiations for a new contract for more than 150 teachers and staff at McHenry Community High School District 156 ended around 1:30 a.m. Friday. Some progress was made, but teachers and the district still have not reached a deal.
The main sticking point continued to be the salary schedule for teachers.
Teachers have been on strike since Oct. 1, and seven days of class have been canceled so far as a result.
The homecoming dance has been postponed, and the homecoming football game has been forfeited, leaving many players missing out on what was supposed to be a highlight of their young careers.
Football players said they feel seniors, especially, are being robbed, because college scouts can’t see them play.
“I know NIU was going to come out for a game, but since the strike, we couldn’t really get a game going,” senior Graham Waddington said.
Waddington said he fears his college football dreams could be slipping away.
“It’s scary. I just want to go back out there and play so bad,” he said.
Negotiations were set to resume at 7:30 p.m. Friday. Even if a deal is reached this weekend, the earliest class would be back in session would be Tuesday, as Monday is a scheduled day off for the Columbus Day holiday.
“We would obviously have to work on a couple other things, some language issues. The teachers association would need to get together and ratify, and then hopefully school on Tuesday. So again, we’re cautiously optimistic,” District 156 board secretary pro tem Timothy Byers said.