Teachers, school district reach tentative labor agreement
September 18, 2008
Tahoe-Truckee Unified School District officials and teachers union members announced Thursday that a tentative contract agreement has been reached and will be finalized next week.
The announcement follows months of negotiations that were, at times, openly hostile. The parties met last Wednesday night, and the district offered teachers a 12 percent raise over two years, which the teachers union did not accept at the meeting.
“We’ve been continuing to communicate between the two groups and got to the point where both sides were comfortable with the agreement,” said Steve Jennings, superintendent for the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District. “I’m ecstatic that we can now put this behind us.”
The Tahoe Truckee Education Association and the school district board of trustees still need to approve and finalize the agreement, which is expected to occur by Tuesday, Jennings said.
“We will work hard to develop a collaborative relationship and process so we don’t get into the situation we’ve just gone through,” Jennings said Thursday.
School district officials said they could not release details of the contract until Friday afternoon, but the most recent proposal submitted by a California Teachers Association chapter services consultant included a 3 percent raise for last year and a 9 percent increase for the current school year.
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Last week’s teachers union proposal also included a charter school reserve component, which would allocate 68 percent from an approximately $2.5 million reserve fund that would be divided among the teachers pending a contract resolution.
That component is what delayed a settlement last Thursday when the board retracted the charter schools reserve fund well into the 16-hour negotiation meeting, causing the teachers union to request another session.
Representatives from both groups have expressed relief that the process is near completion and “that all parties can be fully focused on providing outstanding education for the students,” Jennings said in a released statement.