The day will be an optional teacher workday.
"More than 40 percent of OCS teachers have already taken leave for May 16th. Without proper staffing in the schools, serious and real concerns for student safety will exist," the school system said.
Students will not have to make up that day. Testing and school events will be handled by individual schools. Parents are advised to contact their child's school office for details.
As for children who depend on schools for meals, the district said it is still researching options.
Earlier Monday, Wake County Schools announced they would not hold classes May 16.
Durham and Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools have also announced they will be closed on the day.
Thousands of teachers are expected to protest at the General Assembly in Raleigh on the 16th when lawmakers reconvene for the legislative short session.
Education leaders say although North Carolina teaching salaries have gone up slightly year-to-year, the state still ranks among the lowest nationwide in overall teacher pay with the total average salary just under $50,000 per year.
They hope a mass walkout will lead to changes in classroom conditions and education.