Some progress has been made between the South Butler School Board and the teachers’ union but the sides are still very far apart on some major issues.
“The parties have made a little progress and that’s a positive sign; however, until the teachers make significant changes in their wage, healthcare and post-employment benefit demands, the parties are still a long way from home,” school board solicitor Tom Breth said in an interview Tuesday.
The latest negotiation session was held Monday night. According to the school board, the two sides reached a tentative agreement about teachers attending open house programs on more than one night.
Pennsylvania State Education Association representative Brooke Witt sees recent decisions by the board to publicize details from the talks as antagonizing the teachers. However, she hopes to be able to translate the small agreement concerning open houses into progress on larger issues like wages and healthcare.
“It seems like when you’re negotiating a contract if you can hit a point where you have some mutual agreements and some progress is being made, it goes a long way into rolling into the bigger issues and getting more agreement so we were trying to focus on that,” Witt said Tuesday.
Two additional bargaining sessions have been scheduled for later this month.