By Cristina Kumka
Teachers and school boards in Tinmouth, Wells, Poultney and Middletown Springs have reached a “fair” agreement, according to head negotiator for the boards Clarence Haynes.
A previously agreed upon salary raise of 10.5 percent for each teacher over the next four years was not touched during a 12.5-hour bargaining session Wednesday night that resulted in teachers returning to their classrooms this morning.
A deal was reached at about 4:30 this morning, according to Superintendent Joan Paustian.
What has changed however, is language in the new, merged contract that defines work conditions like the length and structure of the work day and personal leave time.
Haynes said he could not specify what the exact conditions were until the contract is ratified by all parties April 23, but he did say “we were able to take care of all the work day (language). We gave quite alot more than what we would have liked to but we have an agreement. School is back in session and we have agreements we can work with.”
Haynes said the boards could have, but didn’t, take extreme measures if a deal couldn’t have been reached, like forcing teachers back to their classrooms by imposing a mandatory contract, similar to action taken by the Addison Rutland
Supervisory, that imposed a mandatory 1-year deal before a teachers contract was reached.
“We were trying to get a settlement and not pick a bigger fight,” Haynes said.
All missed sports games will be made up in the coming weeks.
The end of the school year has been extended by at least a week in all schools.
See tomorrow’s Herald for the details.