Students joined the picket line as their teachers in the Reynoldsburg school district in Ohio, USA started strike action against years of cutbacks, which are having a devastating effect on schools. School students and parents turned out in force to a rally at the weekend in support of the teachers. One 11 year old told reporters: "It really stinks that the teachers work so hard for us, and they don’t get the respect they deserve". 

After negotiations broke down with the school board, teachers started their strike on Friday. Meanwhile the management is trying to break the strike by bringing in unqualified people while the teachers are out, although parents are dissatisfied with the level of staffing and one school was forced to close after a fight broke out amongst pupils. Now the authorities are planning to keep children in their classrooms all day including in break and lunch times. Many parents are refusing to send their children to school under the circumstances and also in support of the teachers' stand. One said: "I’m not sending them to a facility that is going to lock them in a room, feed them and tell them when they can go to the restroom.” Teachers are manning the picket line as bus loads of contract labour go into the schools in the early morning. The contracter is a 'strike management' firm called Huffmaster.

Teachers say that the district has suffered from years of underfinding which have led to oversized classes and a reduced curriculum. One teacher said she had classes of 33, 34 and 37. Another said she had seven textbooks for 31 students. The teachers themselves have suffered years of pay freezes. The board has also introduced a performance related pay system. Echoing the Chicago teachers strike, parents carried placards saying 'Give us the schools our children deserve.'

The brave stand of the Reynoldsburg teachers and the level of support they are receiving from parents and students is echoed in other parts of the USA as people fight the underfunding of public education and its gradual replacement with privatised or semi-privatised schools. For example parents fighting for public schools in Philadelphia have filed a lawsuit against the state authorities and in Newark, students have blockaded roads in the fight against the dismantling of the public school system.