August 25, 2019

Contract Agreements Reached for Region 4 Teachers and Administrators

REGION 4— Negotiators for Regional School District 4 and the unions representing district teachers and school administrators have reached contract agreements without the need for binding arbitration.

Superintendent of Schools Ruth Levy said negotiators for the district school boards and the Region 4 Education Association and Region 4 Administrators Association reached tentative contract agreements earlier this month, with professional mediators provided by the state Department of Education assisting in the final stage of the negotiations. If no agreements were reached this month, the school district would have been forced in to binding arbitration, where a three-member arbitration panel picks that last and best offer from one party or the other.

Levy said the contracts have been approved by members of both union bargaining units, and need final approval from each of the district’s four school boards. Levy said details of the contracts would be released after the proposed agreements are presented to the school boards at a joint meeting scheduled for Dec. 1.

Region 4 negotiators have usually reached agreements through mediation in the years since the state’s binding arbitration law for teacher contract negotiations became effective in 1979. District administrators are in the final year of a four-year contract that expires June 30. The district’s 213 teachers agreed in 2009 to a one-year salary reopener in a contract that expires June 30.

Garth Sawyer, district finance director, said the salary reopener provided a one percent increase for teachers at the top step of the district’s teacher salary schedule, with teachers at lower steps on the salary schedule receiving a slightly larger pay increase in the current school year