School district negotiations to begin

School district staff should not expect salary or benefit increases next year.

That’s  an assumption outlined by district officials working on the fscal year 2014 budget,  just as they are about to re-enter negotiations with the teachers’ union – this time with an eye on a longer contract.

A special school board meeting is scheduled for Wednesday behind closed doors to talk about collective bargaining.

In August, the district and Juneau Education Association reached agreement on a one-year contract, which expires in June. Now the two sides must go back to the table.

School board president Sally Saddler says she hopes bargaining results in three-year contracts this time.

“Any time we can extend the duration of a contract it frees us up to spend more time focusing on the instruction and education of our students as opposed to going through the negotiation process,” Saddler says.  

The school district also will be bargaining with administrative staff, represented by the Juneau School Administrators Association. In addition, the Juneau Education Support Staff has wage re-openers in its new contract.