Board of Education Announces Tentative Contract Agreements with WTEA and WTSSSPA
Washington Township Board of Education president Julie Kozempel and Superintendent of Schools Joe Bollendorf announced today tentative three-year agreements with the Washington Township Education Association (WTEA) and the Washington Township Schools Supportive Services Personnel Association (WTSSSPA). Once ratified, the new WTSSSPA will be effective beginning July 1, 2018. The new WTEA contract, which represents the largest of the District’s four collective bargaining units, would be effective July 1, 2019.
Approximately 850 teachers and secretaries in the District comprise the WTEA. The WTSSSPA union represents a membership of more than 615, including bus drivers, food service personnel, maintenance workers and custodians, computer technicians, assistants and security personnel.
Details of the agreement have not been made public, as the groups will continue to work on establishing salary guides. Following the ratification process with the respective union memberships, the Board of Education will vote to accept the final contract agreements.
“I commend the persistent work of all involved parties and negotiation teams who were committed to achieving labor peace and maintaining the strength and integrity of our educational programming and support services,” Kozempel said. “It is great news for our schools and our community. Having a ratified contract before the current contract has expired is so beneficial and, in the case of the WTEA, this hasn’t happened in our District for decades. This speaks to the mutual level of engagement from both sides of the table.”
“We are grateful for the open dialogue and cooperation that brought these tentative contracts to fruition in a timely fashion,” Bollendorf said. “These contracts allow us to focus on student growth and achievement and reaffirm our shared commitment to Washington Township staff, students and families. We celebrate this news and turn our attention to exciting initiatives that are planned for the coming years.”
"The WTEA negotiating team would like to publicly thank the Board of Education team for its mutual level of respect in arriving at this tentative agreement,” WTEA President Gerry Taraschi said. “It is truly an historical moment in the settling of contracts here in Washington Township."
"The members of the WTSSSPA negotiations team thank the BOE for helping us reach a tentative agreement in a timely manner," WTSSSPA President Chrissy Kosar said. "It’s taken a little less than a year, so we thank the Board for acknowledging how much they appreciate our service to the students and community."