Kent professor says long teachers' strike in Strongsville could affect student achievement

STRONGSVILLE, Ohio - If the Strongsville teachers' strike goes on for a long time it could affect student accomplishments, according to a Kent State University professor.

Joffrey Jones, PhD said the research is not extensive on specifically how teachers' strikes affect student achievement. 

"There's more compelling research that would suggest frequency or duration of student absence from school or teacher absence from school can affect student achievement negatively," he said. "So it may stand to reason that if the strike goes on for a long period of time, it will affect student achievement."

The Strongsville Education Association has been walking the picket lines in a strike that began Monday.

Jones remembers how it felt when he was on strike as a young English teacher in Parma in 1976.

"I certainly was not happy that we were on strike," Jones said. "That is a very difficult time for everyone involved and I would prefer to have been with my students than on the picket line."

Since the 1976 Parma strike was in September, school was just starting so there was no huge break in the school year. However, things could be different when students have substitute teachers for extended periods of time. 

"They have different learning environments, different instructional approaches, different relationships with substitute teachers. It just stands to reason when a regular teacher is not present it would affect student achievement negatively," Jones said.

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