THERMAL, Calif. -

Coachella Valley High School Junior Jesus Gonzalez said it's been a different school year compared to others.

"It's been very difficult because we haven't had teachers," Gonzalez said. "I feel like the problems of the teachers are affecting the student's education. And I feel like it should just stay in between adults instead of the students getting into it."

For months, Coachella Valley Unified School District (CVUSD) officials have been negotiating with teachers to meet on an agreeable contract involving salaries.

A discussion district officials said at one point, involved a 17 percent increase in salaries and prep time offered by the district.

But now, they hope a new agreement will satisfy salaries, and instruction times.

"If something were to happen where we'd have to cancel school, or send kids home early on a day, we'd be below the minimum the state allows, and would have to return money to the state if we were not meeting those instructional minutes," CVUSD Assistant Superintendent Greg Fromm said.

But this past week, many schools experienced adversity.

Many students took part in a walkout earlier this week, and even dozens of teachers across the district called in sick.

Union members said the number of absences was not a planned sickout.

"I'm not surprised that teachers are feeling the stress and felt the need to take off to hopefully regroup and come back and do their job," Coachella Valley Teachers Association President Richard Razo said. "It wasn't authorized by us and we would never do that. The teachers' major concerns are the safety of our students and the education of our students. Is it unusual? Yes, because we don't have that absenteeism."

But both sides said they hope to not continue walking, and start talking.

"We do know that teachers matter," Fromm said. "Our students matter. We want to, in the near future, come to an agreement."