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Altamont Teachers Won't Strike
Altamont's school board and teachers union reached a tentative agreement on teacher contracts Wednesday night, averting a strike set for Thursday.
The three hours of negotiation were the last in a seven-month effort to find a compromise between the Altamont Board of Education and the Altamont Education Association that, in the end, included a federal mediator. If an agreement was not reached, teachers were prepared to walk off the job Thursday morning.
In the end, the threat of a strike proved to be a powerful motivator.
"In these financial times, it's hard to get a settlement that everybody's gonna be thrilled with," said AEA President Mike Delaney after announcing the agreement. "We're not thrilled with it. I'm sure they're not thrilled with it, but it was the best thing to get something settled and make sure we could have school tomorrow."
Before Wednesday's negotiations, Delaney said the board wanted teachers to accept a wage freeze and a schedule with less time for planning. In addition to opposing both measures, the union wanted to add language to the contract to protect teachers from disciplinary action without "just cause."The terms of the agreement will not be public until both the board and union have ratified them.