Kelso teachers vote to defy court order to go back to school

KELSO, Wash. (AP) — Striking teachers in Kelso have voted to defy a court order telling them to go back to school.

The teachers who have been on strike since last Wednesday are scheduled to continue negotiating on Monday with help from a mediator.

Late last week, a judge in Cowlitz County Superior Court declared the strike illegal and ordered teachers back to school on Tuesday.

The teachers union voted Sunday evening to defy that court order.

Teachers and other educators had been working without a contract in Kelso since June 30. Kelso School District serves more than 4,500 students. Kelso Education Association represents some 300 teachers and other certificated educators.

Meanwhile, teachers in Seattle voted Sunday to accept their new contract. They returned to their classrooms last week. Six days of the Seattle school year will have to be rescheduled.