Rockford schools strike continues into second day

March 30, 2012

Associated Press

Planned auditions for students interested in attending the Rockford School District's Creative and Performing Arts program have been canceled due to the teachers' strike.

Auditions were scheduled for Friday and Saturday will be rescheduled once the district finalizes a labor agreement with its teachers.

About 1,500 members of the Rockford Education Association decided to go on strike after negotiations failed to result in a deal.

Efforts to agree on a new contract have been under way since April. Teachers and administrators have been working under terms of an expired contract since July 1.

Union president Karen Bieschke says negotiations have been hampered by disagreements over language in the contract.

While interim School Superintendent Robert Willis says he is disappointed the sides haven't reach agreement, he suggests they weren't far apart.