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Battle Ground, Evergreen cancel classes Friday

Those two districts are the only ones left on strike in Clark County as Washougal teachers approve an 18 percent raise

CLARK COUNTY — The 30,000 students from Battle Ground and Evergreen school districts will finish out another week without going back to school, as 2,600 teachers at both districts continue their strike.

Battle Ground teachers rally outside school district headquarters in Brush Prairie. Photo by Chris Brown
Battle Ground teachers rally outside school district headquarters in Brush Prairie. Photo by Chris Brown

At Evergreen, the district says bargaining teams met with a state mediator until midnight last night, and then again today, but haven’t been able to reach a deal. Teachers there are not negotiating a full new contract, just a pay raise as they’re entering the final year of a three-year deal. The district says its offer would keep Evergreen teachers the highest paid in the county, and among the highest in the state, with an average total salary of $80,687 (including $11,556 in local funding). Evergreen Education Association hasn’t detailed exactly what kind of pay increase they are seeking, but say the district isn’t putting all of the additional funding they received from the stay for teachers into their offer. The district says they are putting all of that money forward, and then some.

The story is much the same in Battle Ground, where the district reversed course on a three-year contract offer. The Battle Ground Education Association has, according to the district, been pushing for a one-year deal with a 19.4 percent raise. The district’s latest offer was for a one-year deal with an 11.4 percent increase above last year’s total compensation. But the district says any such deal would likely also requiring cutting unfunded staff due to cuts coming to local levy dollars.

In other news, Washougal students will return to school on Friday after teachers overwhelmingly approved a new contract this morning. The two-year deal included an average 18 percent increase, which will boost pay for a starting teacher to $51,434 and the maximum will be $96,944.

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About The Author

Chris Brown

Chris Brown comes to Clark County Today with 15 years of local news experience as a reporter, editor, and anchor at KXL News Radio and KOIN-6 TV in Portland. In 2016, he won an Oregon Association of Broadcaster's award for Best Investigative Reporting for a series on America's Violent Youth. He has also been awarded by the Associated Press for Best Breaking News coverage as editor of Portland's Morning News following the 2015 school shooting at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon. The second oldest of eight home-schooled children, Brown graduated from high school two years early. After several odd jobs, he earned an internship at KXL Radio, eventually working his way into a full-time job. Brown has lived in Clark County his entire life, and is very excited at the opportunity to now focus full-time on the significant stories happening in his own back yard, rather than across “the river.’’ After a few years in Vancouver, he recently moved back to Battle Ground with his wife and two young daughters. When he's not working to report what's happening in Clark County, Brown enjoys spending time with his family, playing music, taking pictures, or working in the yard. He also actually does enjoy long walks on the beach, and sunsets.

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