Seattle teachers to strike on 1st day of school Wednesday

SEATTLE (AP) — Teachers in Seattle will walk picket lines Wednesday after last-minute negotiations over wages and other issues failed to avert a strike.

Members of the Seattle Education Association, which represents about 5,000 teachers and support staff, voted last week to walk out if there wasn't an agreement by then. School was to begin Wednesday for 53,000 students in Seattle Public Schools — Washington's largest school district.

Both sides remained far apart on several key issues, including pay raises, teacher evaluations and the length of the school day.

Seattle parents were scrambling to come up with options ahead of the decision. The city parks department was expanding before- and after-school care programs into all day offerings because of the strike and some community centers were also opening their doors.