R.I. School District, Union, Reach Deal To Avoid Mass Firing

A Rhode Island school district that fired all the teachers from an under-performing school has reached an agreement with the union. The two sides say the roughly 87 teachers and other staffers who were to lose their jobs at the end of this year will be allowed to return without having to reapply.

The agreement calls for a longer school day and other reforms.

The board of trustees overseeing the school system in Central Falls, one of the poorest communities in the state, voted in February to fire the staff of Central Falls High School.

The school was under a mandate from the state to make improvements, and it opted for the mass firings after a breakdown in talks with teachers about other reforms that would have required more work, some without extra pay.

President Obama, during a national address on education in March, said the firings were an example of the need for accountability over student performance.

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