School Board Approves

The school board voted to approve our tentative agreement with the District — a two-year deal covering wages and benefits — pending our ratification.

Complete details of the agreement will be explained at our September 1st General Membership meeting (3:15 in the middle school). At that meeting, you will also be given information regarding potential Messa policy changes that can reduce the cost of the premium. You will be voting on whether to change our policy or keep it as is.

Another change for you will be dues withholding options. Last year, we all paid over 15 periods. This year, you can choose 5, 10 or 15 payroll deductions. This can help increase the itemized deduction for your income taxes, or simply get the dues payments out of the way more quickly. You will note your preference at the General Membership meeting. (Anyone who does not choose an option will be put on the 15 pay period deductions.)

We also have some more staff changes for next year. Sally Grimm decided to retire this summer, so her position has been posted. A new part-time Art instructor (Anna Lacey) for the middle school has been hired — she will also be doing aide duties in the mornings. Familiar faces are working in new locations: Judy Pressley is 1/2 time middle school special education and 1/2 time gifted and talented. Cheryl Balmer is 4/5 at Central. Janette Tramel is now at North. Cece Mallet will be 1/2 time special education at the middle school and 1/2 time special education/TC at the high school. Amy Sue Manley is librarian at both the high school and middle school, moving Sue Williams to elementary library. I think that’s everyone, but accept my apologies if I forgot you!

At this point, all but two of the pink-slipped teachers have been reinstated or found full-time employment in other districts.

The administration and school board are hoping for a large turnout at the high school ribbon cutting ceremony on September 1st. You’ve probably received an invitation in the mail, and Matt mentioned it in his welcome back letter. The high school teachers will be attending, since the principal decided to make this our open house night. The PEA negotiating team would like to have as many other members attend as possible, as a display (publicly) of our support for the district and its students.We have settled the contract for now, but in a couple of years, all language will be on the table. We’d like to sponsor several activities and events during these next two years to increase the public’s perception of PEA and garner their support. Positive good will from the community can be a real asset at the bargaining table.

Hope your summer has been restorative. See you in a week!

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