Contract talks between negotiators for the D.C. School Board and the Washington Teachers Union continued yesterday but a federal mediator overseeing the talks said the bargaining moved slowly.
John Wagner, of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service, said the board and the union reached no agreements on any proposals yesterday but added that both groups are "beginning to tackle some difficult issues."
"We're making progress but it's slow," Wagner said.
Meanwhile, the teachers union scheduled a meeting of union representatives from every school in the city for 2 p.m. today at the Metropolitan AME Church to begin organizing a strike effort.
Union officials said a general membership meeting, at which teachers could vote to give union leaders strike authorization, could be held as early at Tuesday night.
The mediator said he has not spoken with the union about today's meeting or the threat of a strike.
"Both sides are free to do what they want outside of the negotiating arena," Wagner said. "But they've got to realize that the action they take could jeopardize their position at the bargaining table."
Wagner said neither side agreed to continue negotiating through the weekend. "We're just going along," he said. "I tell them we are recessing and ask them if they'll meet tomorrow."