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Northside residents raise concerns amid teacher strike

Many who live in the Near North neighborhood say they aren't concerned with the commotion, but rather the bigger issues at stake, like their children's education.

MINNEAPOLIS — The impacts of what's happening outside Minneapolis' Davis Center are being both heard and felt by the people who call the Near North neighborhood home. 

"I see them marching, holding up signs and stuff," said Michael Gill, an 8th-grader who lives near the district offices. 

These sights and sounds have become the Olson Middle School 8th-grader's new reality the last two-and-a-half weeks, as members of the teacher's union and district leaders struggle to reach a deal ending the strike. 

"I don't want to stay out of school forever," said Gill. 

The reality of the situation is weighing heavily on parents in the neighborhood, like Lashauna Mosby, a mother of five.

"They letting it go on this long. Is you serious?" asked a concerned Mosby. 

She says she's trying to juggle kids, while also trying to keep them sheltered from the struggles she's having to manage as a single parent. 

"The hardest part is they being aware of too much. The time they could be learning, they aware of stuff that's going on," said Mosby. She went on to say, "'Cause they be at school half the time, but when they come home, I can ease up because they still remember the day that they had in school — 'Oh, this happened at recess,' you know, it takes a little bit of edge off."

Many people KARE 11 spoke with who live in the neighborhood say they aren't bothered by the loud chanting and honking horns, considering there are much bigger issues at stake like the education for the kids who call the neighborhood home.

"My dad always told me that my education is always going to be important. I want to go to college; I really do," said Gill. 

But for now, those college dreams are seemingly put on hold.

"It's stopping us," said Gill. 

For now, the sights and sounds play on. 

The district's latest update on negotiations as of Tuesday evening, says it has addressed all of the union's demands. District leaders say they made a final offer to the union, with a starting salary of $50,000 for all teachers and $3,000 in bonuses.

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