Teachers, Students, Prepare Lunch After Cafeteria Staff Walkout - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

02/03/05

Teachers, Students, Prepare Lunch After Cafeteria Staff Walkout

Cafeteria workers at the board of education. Cafeteria workers at the board of education.

Fed up with low wages, school cafeteria workers in Long County walked off the job this morning. It happened at a cafeteria which serves elementary, middle and high school students in Ludowici. Teachers, parents and even some students scrambled to the kitchen to prepare and serve lunch for the students.

After the workers walked off the job, they walked right over to the superintendent's office and demanded more money. Tired of being paid low wages, workers stood outside the doors of the board of education.

"I've been here for 26 years and there's a lady been here for four years and my check was $2 more than hers," said worker Alfreda Buckner.

Meanwhile, it was a scramble by  parents, some students and other volunteers to serve the students.

Many parents were not at all happy when they heard what was going on. "They had our students out of class in the cafeteria preparing lunch and to me that was completely unacceptable for my children to be in the cafeteria when they go to school to get an education," said angry parent Patricia Smith.

Smith and many other parents do support these workers. They want to see them get paid what they deserve so the students at Long County can enjoy lunch instead of pitching in to help serve it. "My hat's off to the cafeteria workers who are standing up for what they believe they're long due for," said Smith.

When WTOC asked the superintendent of Long County Schools, Dean Brown, about the strike, she refused to answer any of our questions. However, she did issue this statement:

"The Long County Board of Education has met with the cafeteria staff and has agreed to return to work. The Board of Education will address the issues presented to them at a future meeting."

That future meeting will be held at the next board of education meeting, which is scheduled for Monday the 14th at 6:30pm. We'll let you know what happens.

Reported by: Nicole Teigen, nteigen@wtoc.com

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