Strike will continue into a second day, classes canceled at Clark College

KPTV photo.

VANCOUVER, WA (KPTV) - Classes are canceled for a second straight day at Clark College in Vancouver. The cancellation for Tuesday comes as the college and faculty are at odds over contracts.

Faculty began a strike Monday morning, lining the sidewalk off McLoughlin Boulevard with signs in hand.

“We have about 400 faculty members here,” Suzanne Southerland said. “Our goal has been the same since day one and that is competitive salaries for all of our faculty, especially part-time professors, so we can attract the best teachers for our students.”

Kelly Love, a spokesperson for the college, says this is the first time Clark College has been through something like this.

“We have a very lean budget, we have had enrollment decline by 25-percent since 2011,” Love said.

Negotiations between the two sides have been ongoing for the better part of a year. Love says they want to have a sustainable plan in place for the future, citing a drop in enrollment for the last seven consecutive years.

“Clark College has worked diligently to come up with a proposal that both honors our faculty because we know they do amazing things with their students and that we value them, but that will also keep the college sustainable,” Love said.

Stuck in the middle of all of this are the students. They told FOX 12 on Monday that they will worry if the negotiations become a prolonged thing.

“We will win a fair contract, we are united, we have a lot of community support, we have a lot of student support,” Southerland said.

“We will commit to the students that we will do everything we can to get their teachers back to class for them,” Love said.

Classes at Clark College will remain cancelled until the strike has ended.

Copyright 2020 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.

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