Business / Economy

Teachers bring protest to the streets

Hollister School District teachers and school employees protest their lack of progress with district negotiations

Hollister School district employees took their message the streets on Monday May 23 as protesters from school age to grandmothers raised their signs as traffic sped by.

Negotiations between the teachers' union and the Hollister School District have been going on for several months and are still unresolved. The groups were set up on two corners of Hollister's most daunting intersection,Tres Pinos Road and Highway 25. One group was in front of Safeway while the other cluster was stationed in front of Speedee's just across Highway 25.

Erica Robledo Dickens, who teaches at Rancho San Justo, said, "They're not wanting to give us the raise we deserve." She was there with her son making signs and preparing to join in the protest. Dickens is an activities director who also teaches math and leadership classes.

Cheryl Rios, a speech language pathologist at Ladd Lane School said, "They want to cap our health benefits. We've already agreed to staying with a 27 student class size for one more year."

Dickens said teachers are getting frustrated because of the lack of movement toward a contract resolution. The group says they plan to attend the May 24 Hollister School Distrct board meeting and that they expect to be back at the table for negotiations again on Wednesday, May 25.

Leslie David

Leslie David is a Bay Area independent reporter/producer and is a BenitoLink founding board member. She has produced for radio, television, newspaper and magazines in both California and Wyoming. She was with KRON-TV News in San Francisco as camera-woman, editor and field producer, where she won the Commonwealth Club's Thomas Storke Award with Linda Yee for their series on the Aids Epidemic. She started as a small market news reporter shooting her own 16mm film at KEYT-TV Santa Barbara. Leslie lives on a ranch with her family in San Benito County.