Teachers union strike in Minneapolis enters second week as potential ‘make up days’ accumulate

Hundreds of Minneapolis teachers union members are on strike for a second week, demanding better wages, reduced class sizes and mental health support. And teachers are threatening to continue their walkout despite a new menace: makeup days.

Minnesota state policy requires students to receive a set amount of annual instruction in the classroom. According to state law, students in grades 1-11 must attend 165 school days. School districts unable to meet this requirement must make up these days at the end of the year. Decisions are made on a case-by-case basis. 

Students have missed six days of school due to the strike so far. The Minneapolis Public Schools board is still assessing whether these days need to be made up at the end of the year. 

Once the district reaches its decision on how to make up for the lost class time, the teachers union must approve.

Before this, the district was strike-free for over 50 years. In fact, students and parents were just returning to a period of normalcy after pandemic mandates were eased last month. But after nearly a year of failed negotiations with MPS, the union decided to strike now, leaving parents and students in the lurch.

The district appears to be inching toward a deal with the union, though according to a district webpage the two parties have a long way to go. Further delays will only worsen the growing makeup day mess for students and teachers.