Community has mixed reaction as Strongsville teachers strike comes to end

STRONGSVILLE, Ohio - The end to an eight-week-long teachers' strike in Strongsville brought about mixed emotions in the suburban-Cleveland community.

"It's relieving," said Bo Buceaschi, a Strongsville parent. "It's nice to drive by the schools and not see people protesting."

"It's going to be nice to have them (teachers) back," said Stefani Shamrowicz, a Strongsville student.

"They (teachers) are a disgrace to the profession as far as I'm concerned," said Dorothy Ziebro, a former Strongsville resident.

Strongsville teachers and the board of education approved a new contract over the weekend, which includes a boost in teachers' salaries, but a hefty hike in health insurance. Teachers will now pay double for those benefits.

"I'm glad it's over but it seems too late," said Eric Richardson, a senior at Strongsville High School.

Richardson said he felt so far behind in his studies that he's opted not to take his advanced placement physics test, which means he'll miss out on college credit.

"Ultimately, it's the kids that lose out in all of this, and they're forgotten," said James Durkalski, a Strongsville resident who's married to a local teacher.

Durkalski said he blames both sides for a strike that's divided the community and impacted the students.

Students did not attend school Monday while substitutes moved their belongings out and teachers moved back in.

Residents said they're eager to get back to work, move forward and begin to heal from a bitter fight.

"It's going to take a lot of dedication from the teachers, and these teachers love our kids, so they're going to do our best," said Jennifer Zoul, a Strongsville parent.

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