With contract negotiation dragging on well into a second year, Newton's public school teachers are taking action to put the pressure on district officials.

The district’s 2,200 union members — which includes teachers, counselors, paraprofessionals among others — will now remain silent during required administrative meetings and will stop participating on voluntary committees, according to Michael Zilles, president of the Newton Teachers Association. “The message we're sending is that we're not going to go along and continue to go above and beyond the way we always do when we don't have a contract in place,” he said.

But School Committee Chair Ruth Goldman said after 15 months of negotiating, an agreement is close. “We’re in the home stretch,” Goldman said, “We’ve got a small number of items left on the table after working through really over 60 items.”

Among the issues that are sticking points are a parental leave policy, cost of living increases, workers compensation and preparation time for elementary school teachers. The teacher’s contract expired August 31, 2018, and they’ve been working with a contract extension ever since.

This isn't the first time in recent memory that Newton teachers have worked without a contract, said Zilles. Goldman said that it was the district's, "intention to absolutely settle the contract before the old one expired, ”

Zilles said his members were influenced by the recent teacher's strike in Dedham. The teachers "were no longer being demonized," he said. "They were the heroes of that story.”

Both sides meet again for negotiations on November 12 at the Newton Education Center.