Sequim teachers pick date of single-day walkout

SEQUIM — Sequim teachers will walk out on Monday, May 18, and students will have the day off.

The Sequim School Board decided Monday night that classes would be canceled that day but that extracurricular activities would remain as they are scheduled.

The day will be made up on June 18.

The Sequim Education Association voted last week to have the 175 teachers of the district join a statewide rolling walkout — in which unionized teachers strike for one day — in protest of legislative inaction on fully funding public education.

The union is among the two dozen statewide that had joined the protest, according to the Washington Education Association.

Teachers in Port Angeles are expected this week to consider joining the rolling walkout as well.

Unions in other districts on the North Olympic Peninsula have not taken action.

Linsay Porter Rapelje, acting president of the Sequim Education Association, has said teachers are increasingly frustrated by legislative inaction on meeting the state Supreme Court’s deadlines for the state to fully fund for education.

The court ordered full funding of kindergarten-through-12th-grade education in the state’s public schools by 2018 in its 2012 McCleary ruling in a case that has its roots in Chimacum.

The court cited legislators last September for contempt for making no progress toward the goal and gave them until the end of the legislative session this year to show progress or risk sanctions.

The Legislature began a special session April 29 to consider education funding, among other actions.

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