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Stoughton School Committee, Teachers Back to the Table Tonight

Stoughton Teacher Association president Andrea Pires address the crowd at the rally before Tuesday night's school committee meeting.
Stoughton Teacher Association president Andrea Pires address the crowd at the rally before Tuesday night's school committee meeting.
For the first time since Oct. 3, the Stoughton School Committee and the Stoughton Teachers Association are going to be sitting down at the negotiating table  Wednesday, Dec. 11, 6:30 p.m. table to attempt to resolve their contract impasse.

Besides disagreeing on how the teachers should be paid, the two sides differ on who is responsible for the two sides not being able to meet to get the contract resolved.

"The issue at hand is that the union bargaining team has not met with the School Committee negotiating team since Oct. 3 in spite of our request for several dates, yet continues with a public campaign to pressure us to settle," said school committee chairman Joyce Husseini in an email statement Tuesday night.  "We are looking forward to our scheduled negotiation meeting with them scheduled for tomorrow night.  No other dates have been accepted for future meetings although our ground rules state that we must have two scheduled in advance."

Stoughton Teachers Association president Andrea Pires countered by saying the school committee and superintendent of schools Marguerite Rizzi have been the ones who haven't been willing to hold contract talks.

"Here are the facts," said Pires in her statement at the school committee meeting. "Our ground rules state they we have two meetings scheduled in advance. At our Aug. 26 meeting, we agreed to meet Sept. 17 and Oct. 3. We did have a bargaining session on Sept. 17. However, when we met on Oct. 5, Mrs. Husseini was not there because she decided to go a conference instead and Dr. Rizzi did not stay for the bargaining session because she had a conflict. It was a briefing meeting. No bargaining took place.

"At the end of the session, the SC (school committee) attorney said she would get back to STA with dates after talking to her client. After we did not hear anything for a week, but our MTA representative contacted the Sc attorney to ask for dates to meet. The SC attorney presented dates and the first date we were availablle was Dec. 11."

Pires invited the entire school committee to attend the negotiating sessions. Husseini said she would have to consult with their lawyer to see if that was possible without breaking open meeting law.

Rizzi said she was glad the parties will be talking.

"I'm glad we are going to have a meeting," she said. "I hope it will be productive and have some kind of proposal. This is not good for anyone."

The Stoughton Teachers Association had a rally before the meeting and then spoke in front of the school committee for the fifth starting meeting. Chad Kelly, a teacher at the O'Donnell School, spoke for the teachers and presented a petition from the teachers at that school.

Because of the crowd, mostly teachers, the school committee meeting was moved from the high school television studio to the auditorium.






Robin December 11, 2013 at 07:04 AM
No mention of the many parents who showed up to support our teachers?
SoxFan December 11, 2013 at 08:28 AM
Will this conflict with the financial aid presentation being held in the auditorium tonight?

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