By JENNIFER FITCH
10:49 PM EST, February 18, 2013
The Waynesboro Area School District’s teachers union and school board are making progress in contract negotiations, according to representatives for both sides.
Bargaining teams for the teachers union and school board have exchanged written proposals, school board member Rita Daywalt said.
“We are in agreement on a number of issues,” she said, saying salaries and benefits will be the big issues left to be decided.
The union, Waynesboro Area Education Association (WAEA), represents about 275 teachers.
“WAEA gave an all-inclusive package to the (school) board addressing issues they wanted in exchange for a reasonable salary settlement. The board responded with a package of their own,” WAEA President Angie Cales wrote in an email.
Negotiating teams met Monday evening for five hours.
It was the seventh bargaining session since December, Cales said.
Negotiations are “still really cordial and friendly,” Daywalt said.
“Our side is optimistic we can come to an agreement without much further delay,” she said.
Last summer, the two sides ratified a contract that took 2 1/2 years to develop. Because that contract covered 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2012-13, the bargaining teams are back at work on a new deal.
The next negotiations session is scheduled for Monday.
The atmosphere at the bargaining table is different than last year at this time, according to Daywalt.
“There’s a lot of open discussion about the positions of both sides,” Daywalt said.
Neither side has released details of their proposals for the new contract.
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