Steamboat Springs Tired of what they call the School Board's failure to live up to negotiated policies, representatives of the Steamboat Springs Education Association demanded a master contract for district employees and extra pay for teachers who spend extra time working on committees.
The call for a master contract comes just weeks after the School Board declared a Knowledge- and Skills-Based Pay system for teachers and staff unaffordable.
"Three years ago the SSEA and the School Board started down a path together," SSEA representative and middle school teacher Brad Kindred said at Monday's School Board meeting. "That path was alternative compensation. Two years ago, through collaborative bargaining, all parties agreed to a plan.
"That plan was, without any input from the SSEA or the collaborative bargaining team, eliminated. Now the School Board is asking us to start down the path again."
Kindred went on to say teachers will agree to begin work on a new alternative compensation plan only if a master contract is put into place and per diem pay given to any staff members who work overtime on a new compensation system.
Master contracts are legally binding agreements that specifically state job descriptions and working conditions, among other things. Kindred said the negotiated policies currently established for district employees aren't legally binding and thus subject to change through the decisions of the School Board.
School Board President Paula Stephenson said she doesn't believe a master contract is needed in the district. She is, however, willing to discuss one if the teacher's association is willing to put everything on the table during negotiations, including employee tenure.
"It's a two-way street," she said.
Stephenson also rejected Kindred's and teacher Mike Smith's claims that the School Board violated negotiated policies by declaring KSBP unaffordable.
"The board doesn't just randomly change the negotiated policies," Stephenson said.