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Temple University students breathed a collective sigh of relief when their teachers signed a contract with the administration last week. The Temple Association of University Professionals voted to approve the contract last Thursday, ending a bitter dispute that ravaged the campus. Teachers returned to class last Friday under a contract for the first time in six months. The Temple campus yesterday seemed finally to have relaxed, the bitter fighting and protesting over. Students were returning to class after the weekend, and now their teachers joined them voluntarily for the first time since the start of the strike. It was as if a vacation were over and everyone agreed that it was time to get back to work. Temple students said yesterday that they were relieved that the fight was over. Many said that they felt the contract agreement was a signal of a return to normalcy for the campus. "My first reaction was, 'Thank God,' " senior Greg Toften said yesterday. "I guess most of campus feels that way." Junior Don Hayes said that the settlement ended a feeling of apprehension for many students coming back this semester. "We weren't sure exactly what would happen," Hayes said. "I was thinking about transferring last semester but this gave me a glimmer of hope." Students said that they were "fed up" with the length of the contract dispute and that they had lost patience with both sides. "At first I supported the teachers, but after it went on for so long I just got annoyed," Hayes said. Students said they felt that they had suffered more from the strike than either the administration or the faculty. "It wasn't fair for the administration to treat the teachers poorly, but it wasn't fair for the teachers to treat us poorly either," junior Kristen Krumpholz said. "We're the ones who are suffering, we're the ones being victimized," Hayes said. The strike, which lasted 29 days, eventually left 23,000 students without at least one class and 6000 students without any. Teachers walked out on September 4, the first day of classes, and did not return until a Philadelphia Common Pleas Court judge forced them back to work. Because of the strike, Temple extended the fall semester and all but eliminated winter break. Over 1800 students withdrew from Temple during the strike. Many students said yesterday that they knew people who had transferred or had considering transferring themselves. Most said that they understood why the students had left Temple. "This is like a business," sophomore Tony Matos said yesterday. "If you're not satisfied, you don't give them your business or your money." Students were upset, saying that they had received no official notice from the university regarding the settlement. Many said they found out about the agreement from city newspapers or from television news. "I didn't even know there were contract talks until my mother called me," junior Lisa Demeester said. During the strike several Temple students formed Students United for Education, a group which threw its support behind the teachers. Temple's Student Government also support the teachers' union, a move with which some students disagreed. "By supporting one side over another they weren't doing anything to solve the problem," Hayes said. "The students could have played a huge role in this and they didn't." "The students who pulled out were the smart ones," added Matos. "They're the only ones who said, 'Fine then, we'll leave.' "

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