PORTLAND -- After 150 days of negotiations, Portland Public Schools and the teachers union have failed to agree on a new contract.

The mandatory bargaining period ended Sunday.

The Portland Association of Teachers wants an 11.5 percent raise over two years but the district has offered only two percent. The sides also remain far apart on other issues.

Monday, district officials announced they will ask a state mediator to join the negotiations.

Hopefully, with the mediator's assistance, we can try to reach common ground and come closer together to reach an agreement, said Sean Murray, the Chief Human Resources officer for PPS.

The negotiations are scheduled to resume for three days starting September 22nd. If no deal is reached at that time, a mediator will be brought in next month.

The teachers union complained that the district has taken a dangerous path in seeking mediation, which could also threaten open and transparent negotiations.

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