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The COBRA rears: With strike called for mid-week, fight continues over teacher health benefits in Cleveland Heights-University Heights Schools

UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS, Ohio — If the issue of healthcare coverage was not already at the forefront of a Cleveland Heights Teachers Union strike set to begin Wednesday (Dec. 2), it has certainly made it to the top of the grievance list in the last few days.

Despite outcry from the CHTU, its national union affiliate, district families and — quoted in a press release– Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Board of Education pointed to state law that requires the district to suspend pay and compensation to striking public sector employees.

That’s exactly what the school board did last week, approving a district action plan after receiving a 10-day strike notice from the 500-member teachers union.

There could be some legal dispute over whether “compensation,” undefined in that section of the Ohio Revised Code, stretches to healthcare insurance, with CHTU President Karen Rego saying after the Nov. 23

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