Two and a half years of negotiations between the Waynesboro Area School Board and the district’s teachers union led to a one-minute vote Tuesday that could prove pivotal in reaching a contract.
The nine-member school board unanimously agreed to accept the terms of a mediated proposal, saying that it could serve as the basis of a new, three-year contract.
The teachers’ last contract expired June 30, 2010.
The teachers union, Waynesboro Area Education Association, is expected to vote Wednesday on whether it will accept the proposal. The union represents about 275 teachers.
Both sides declined to release details of the proposal until all votes had been taken.
“We can’t until their membership votes,” said Chris Lind, school board member.
The school board needs to notify its health insurance provider Thursday if the proposal was accepted, Lind said. The school board wants to tie any pay increase for 2012-13 to changes in the district’s health insurance offerings.
Union President Mike Engle said the teachers had a meeting Tuesday evening to go over the proposal.
The mediated proposal came out of a bargaining session held Thursday.
The school board discussed the proposal for 15 minutes Tuesday in a closed-door session, after which it took the roll-call vote. Board President Ed Wilson encouraged his fellow board members to keep mum on the proposal as they voted.
“We can’t discuss it,” he said.
All nine school board members were in attendance at the meeting, includinge Wilson, Lind, Bonnie Bachtell, Rita Daywalt, Ashley Newcomer, Firmadge Crutchfield, Billie Finn, Sherry Cline and Leland Lemley.
Lind, Lemley and Daywalt represented the school board at Thursday’s bargaining session.