Teachers at Marquette Area Public Schools have been working without a contract for 234 days.
"We care about these kids and we want to do the best we can for them, and that's why we're out here: let the community know that we continue to do that despite the fact that we don't have a contract," said Tim Fox, teacher at Superior Hills Elementary School.
All across MAPS, teachers have been staging a protest Wednesday in response to working without a contract. Picket signs in hand, teachers walked into school together and walked out of school together at the time the last contract required.
The plan was to raise awareness to the community.
"As teachers, we have more responsibilities, more students. We just took our 29th third grader in one of these classrooms recently and yet we see a decrease in pay," Fox said.
In addition to pay, teachers are looking to reduce class sizes and adjusting health care.
Both sides have been working together at the bargaining table for a while and will continue to do so until a deal is struck.
"We just want to take the approach of still being fiscally responsible, we still want to compensate our teachers, we want them to be happy, we want to decrease class size," said Bill Saunders, Superintendent of MAPS.
Teachers say they will continue to show up for work and educate the children until the conflict is resolved.