The Minneapolis teachers strike entered its second day Wednesday as union and district negotiators met for 90 minutes at Minneapolis Public Schools headquarters.

Union leaders are demanding higher starting salaries for educational support professionals, "competitive salaries" for teachers, school counselors in every school and class-size caps. The union is seeking a 12% salary increase for the first-year and a 5% increase for the second-year.

The average salary for a district teacher is $71,500, according to state data.

Superintendent Ed Graff on Tuesday said the union and district were "still very far apart" and that the price tag for the union's current ask is about $166 million over the district's budget.

A negotiations update posted online by the district Wednesday morning said, "MPS remains committed to meeting and negotiating with MFT in order to reach a contract agreement in order to get our students back in their classrooms as quickly as possible."

On Wednesday afternoon, the district posted its wage proposals online. Among other things, in the first year, teachers with one to six years of experience would get wage increases of 5% to 12.5%, with the larger amounts going to those with less experience, and all other teachers would get a 1.5% boost. In the second year, the district said it is offering a 1.5% boost for all teachers.

Comparing the wage proposals, the district said the union's proposal amounts to a 21% raise over two years at a cost of $257.7 million while the district's offer would equal a 6.4% raise over two years at a cost of $40.6 million.

Classes are canceled for the district's 28,700 students for the duration of the strike.

Shaun Laden, president of the education support professionals chapter of the Minneapolis Federation of Teachers, pushed back on district leaders' claims that the union's proposal would break the budget.

"We don't believe we have a budget crisis in Minneapolis Public Schools," he said. "We have a values and priorities crisis."

Union leaders are also taking aim at the state Legislature, which this year must decide how to spend what is estimated to be a historic $9.3 billion surplus.

About 2,500 people gathered at the State Capitol to rally in support of the union Wednesday afternoon. Several speakers mentioned the surplus but did not detail how the state should step in to address the union's demands.

Dane McLain, a social studies teacher at North Community High School, led his colleagues in a series of chants in front of Lucy Laney Elementary early Wednesday.

Even though he feels his class sizes are manageable, McLain said he voted to strike because he sympathized with colleagues who reported they had 30 or 40 students in a class.

"It's just not sustainable," he said.