The Burlington, Vermont, School Board and union representing teachers in Vermont's largest city are meeting for last ditch negotiations in hope of averting a teachers' strike.
The two sides began meeting with a federal mediator just after 9 a.m. Wednesday. If the talks fail, the strike would begin Thursday.
The teachers union voted last week to go on strike after a year of bitter contract negotiations.
The union has rejected the working conditions imposed by the board last month and wants a negotiated contract for the current school year.
The school board chairman said last month that the board had no plans to return to the bargaining table.
The strike would be the first by teachers in Vermont's largest city since 1978 when teachers were on strike for six days.