After historic rejection of their last contract, Orange County teachers head back to the bargaining table


  • Photo by Neonbrand on Unsplash
Orange County teachers are returning to negotiations Wednesday morning with representatives from Orange County Public Schools, after voting down their last proposed contract.

That historic vote, on June 29, was the first-ever contract rejected by Orange County teachers, who defeated it by a 4 to 1 margin. Wednesday's bargaining session will again address working conditions and teacher pay.

A press announcement sent by Central Florida Jobs With Justice says the current proposal offered by OCPS has been criticized by teachers as being "akin to a pay-day loan, a two-year deal where teachers are only offered a base salary increase in the first year."

The CFJWJ notice also claims the school district has so far refused to affirm the right of teachers to have bathroom breaks, despite teachers saying that they are not allowed.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has pledged to increase starting teacher salaries, but he has not indicated how he will pay for the plan. Teachers are facing increasing housing and other costs, while wages in public schools have mostly stagnated. Following the June contract rejection by Orange teachers, Brevard County teachers also rejected their proposed contract.

The bargaining session Wednesday, which is open to the public, will be live-streamed from the Orange County Classroom Teachers Association building on Webster St., starting at 9:30 a.m., "with lively props," promises CFJWJ.

Stay on top of Orlando news and views. Sign up for our weekly Headlines newsletter.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club for as little as $5 a month.