UTSWC Negotiations

South Washington County Schools is committed to providing regular updates for the collective bargaining agreement negotiations with the United Teachers of South Washington County (UTSWC). The District and UTSWC share a common interest, the success of all students and we are committed to working together to reach an agreement that will benefit our students and those who contribute to their success.

Upcoming mediation dates:                                      Resources:
November 15 Financial Offer Summaries 

2018-19 Teacher Salary Schedule
2018-19 Average Teacher Benefits
2018-19 Teacher Salary Comparisons


Updated November 8, 2019 

Negotiation committee members from District 833 and UTSWC met on October 29. At that meeting, district negotiation committee members presented a proposal to committee members from UTSWC that offered the teachers a 1.0% increase to the salary schedule in Year 1 and a $1.25% increase to the salary schedule in Year 2, which was an increase from the last proposal. These increases, combined with scheduled increases from step movement and increases in District health insurance contributions, resulted in a total package increase of 5.1% over two years. (See the update financial offers summarized here.) 

The UTSWC negotiation committee reviewed the proposal. The two committees had further discussions regarding the proposal, at which time the UTSWC negotiation committee made the decision to petition the Bureau of Mediation Services (BMS) for mediation.

Either negotiation committees may petition the BMS for the services of a mediator. The mediator convenes a meeting to help the parties find a basis for resolving the dispute on terms that are acceptable to both parties. The mediator examines and analyzes positions and interests to ensure that both parties have a clear understanding of the issues before them. Attempts are made to identify priorities and focus the parties' effort on problems that must be solved for an agreement. The mediator works to foster an atmosphere that is conducive to idea-sharing and problem-solving.

The first mediation session is scheduled for November 15. Both committees continue to work positively towards an agreement and both sides have stated they are committed to coming to an agreement in the near future.

An update on the progress of negotiations will be reported at the November 21 School Board Meeting. The district will also continue to provide regular updates as the negotiation discussions proceed on this webpage. 
 
Updated October 10, 2019 

Negotiation committee members from District 833 and UTSWC met on October 3, 2019 for an extended negotiation session that lasted approximately five hours. Several financial proposals and counter-proposals were presented by both negotiations teams. The financial offers are summarized here.

The next negotiations session is scheduled for October 29. Negotiations between both committees continue to progress positively and both sides have stated they are committed to coming to an agreement in the near future.

An update will be provided at the November 7 School Board Meeting. The district will also continue to provide regular updates as the negotiation discussions proceed on this webpage.


Updated September 26, 2019 

Negotiation committee members from District 833 and UTSWC met on September 17, 2019. UTSWC presented a counterproposal from the district negotiating committee that was presented to UTSWC during the previous session. District negotiation committee members then caucused and present a proposal to negotiation committee members from UTSWC. Both negotiation committees have agreed to hold an extended negotiation session on October 3, 2019 with the hopes that with more time together a tentative agreement can be reached.

Negotiations between both committees continue to progress positively and both sides have stated they are committed to coming to an agreement in the near future.

An update on the October 3 meeting will be reported at the October 10 School Board Meeting. The district will also continue to provide regular updates as the negotiation discussions proceed on this webpage. 



Updated September 13, 2019 


Negotiation committee members from District 833 and UTSWC met on September 3, 2019. The district negotiation committee members presented three options for a financial proposal. The committees then recessed to caucus. The district looks forward to a response from UTSWC at our next meeting scheduled for September 17.

An update on the September 17 meeting will be reported at the September 26 School Board Meeting. The district will also continue to provide regular updates as the negotiation discussions proceed on this webpage.


Updated August 29, 2019 

Negotiation committee members from District 833 and UTSWC met on August 21, 2019. The session focused on financial counter-proposals from UTSWC. In the next scheduled session, the district will propose its financial package for the union’s consideration. Negotiations between both committees are progressing positively and both sides have stated they are committed to coming to an agreement in the near future.

Two more negotiating dates were set for September 3 and 17. An update on the September 3 meeting will be reported at the September 12 School Board Meeting. The district will also continue to provide regular updates as the negotiation discussions proceed on this webpage.



Updated August 15, 2019 

Negotiations committee members from District 833 and UTSWC met on August 14, 2019. Meetings continue to be positive and collaborative.

During this negotiation session, UTSWC presented a counter-proposal to the district’s original financial package offer. Additionally, two tentative agreements were reached as UTSWC agreed to the district’s proposed language regarding emergency closing and teacher protection and discipline. The district also agreed to add an additional position to Schedule C (extra-curricular). The district then caucused and provided UTSWC with a financial package counter-proposal that includes withdrawing two of the district’s proposals and a flexible workday option. The district looks forward to a response at the next session.

The committee meets again on August 21, 2019. An update on that meeting will be reported at the August 29 School Board Meeting. The district will also continue to provide regular updates as the negotiation discussions proceed on this webpage.



Updated July 18, 2019    

Negotiation committee members from District 833 and UTSWC met on July 15, 2019. The district offered a proposal related to teacher safety, emergency closing options, teacher time and workload, and additional Schedule C (extra-curricular) positions. The district agreed to add additional Schedule C positions to the contract. The committee will continue to work toward agreements on emergency closing options, including flexible learning (e-learning) days, and teacher time and workload, as it relates to the number of meetings that teachers are required to attend each month. The district anticipates a response from UTSWC regarding the district’s financial proposal at the next session.

The next time committee members meet is on August 14, 2019. An update on that meeting will be reported at the August 15 School Board Meeting. The District will also continue to provide regular updates as the negotiation discussions proceed on this webpage. 


Updated June 21, 2019 

Negotiation committee members from District 833 and UTSWC met for the seventh time on June 13, 2019. During this meeting, UTSWC gave their responses to several district proposals. No tentative agreements were reached during this meeting, but discussions and negotiations continued around open items. Additionally, the district presented its financial proposal in response to UTSWC’s financial proposal.

The next time members from both committees meet is on July 15. An update on that meeting will be reported at the July 18 School Board Meeting. The district will also continue to provide regular updates as the negotiation discussions proceed on this webpage. 

 



Updated June 6, 2019 


Negotiation committee members from District 833 and UTSWC met for the sixth time on May 28, and again on June 5. During those meetings, two more Tentative Agreements (TAs) were achieved regarding administrative items and renewals of Memorandums of Agreement (MOA) pertaining to homeroom/advisory for middle and high school.

The district also responded to UTSWC’s proposals regarding student discipline, class size/caseload and teacher workload. Additionally, initial dialogue around financial frameworks were discussed. Both parties continue to discuss proposed language regarding emergency/snow day closing and flexible learning days.

Four more negotiating dates were set for June 13, July 15, August 14 and August 21. The District will continue to give regular updates on the negotiations process at School Board Meetings and on this webpage.


Updated May 23, 2019 

Negotiation committee members from District 833 and UTSWC met for the fifth time on May 13. Negotiations between both committees are progressing positively with open dialogue and collaboration.

District 833 and UTSWC currently have 27 tentative agreements between the two parties. Most of the tentative agreements center on updated dates, language or changes in statute or law. There were also several Memorandums of Agreement that were renewed, as well as a few that were deleted due to completion of the subject involved.

Several items will continue to be negotiated at future meetings. Some of them include:

 

  • Emergency closings - Working toward an agreement around language on emergency closing options, as well as adding an e-learning option.
  • Time and Teacher workload - Addressing a proposal as it relates to the number of meetings that teachers are required to attend each month.
  • Unrequested Leave of Absence (ULA) - Working toward a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) around ULA, which may happen because of a discontinuance of a position at the end of the school year.
  • Transfer Language - Working toward an agreement around existing language regarding “Educational Needs Transfer” and “realignment.”
  • Salary Schedule - Working toward an agreement regarding changes to the salary schedules in order to encourage teachers to pursue further education and increase their compensation.

It was agreed upon by USTWC and the district that negotiations would initially focus on language changes, followed by budget discussions once the state has approved funding levels.

The next time members from both committees will meet is on May 28. An update on that meeting will be reported at the June 6 School Board Meeting and shared on this webpage.


Updated April 25, 2019 

Negotiation committee members from District 833 and UTSWC met for the fourth time on April 24. At the meeting, members of UTSWC responded to contract proposals from the district. Through a positive and collaborative discussion, UTSWC tentatively agreed to numerous items regarding contract language.
 
The next time members from both committees will meet is on May 13. An update on that meeting will be reported at the May 23 School Board Meeting.


Updated April 18, 2019 

Negotiation committee members from District 833 and UTSWC met for the third time on April 4. At the meeting, the district presented a contract proposal to the members of the UTSWC negotiations committee for consideration. The district also responded to initial proposals from UTSWC.

The next time members from both committees will meet is on April 24. An update on that meeting will be reported at the April 25 School Board Meeting. 


Updated March 20, 2019 


South Washington County Schools is pleased to report that negotiations toward a new collective bargaining agreement between South Washington County Schools and the United Teachers of South Washington County (UTSWC) began on February 27.  Negotiations began sooner than the previous contract negotiations due to removing language from the previous contract which stated, “the parties shall not commence negotiations more than 60 calendar days prior to the expiration of this agreement.”
 
Discussion in the first meeting centered on introductions, ground rules, parameters, and setting future meeting dates. Six more negotiating dates were set for March 19, April 4, April 24, May 13, May 28 and June 5.
 
The negotiations committee met again on March 19.  In this meeting, the UTSWC presented their contract proposals to members of the district negotiations committee for consideration. Discussions around the proposals will continue at future meetings. 
 
The District’s Negotiation Committee consists of Kevin Witherspoon, Director of Human Resources; Dan Pyan, Director of Finance and Operations; Kristine Schaefer, Assistant Superintendent; and School Board members Heather Hirsch; Katie Schwartz; and Sharon VanLeer. Kevin Rupp, the District’s Attorney, will also be on the committee as the facilitator. UTSWC is represented by six teachers and an Education Minnesota representative.
 
Over the last year, the School Board has been conducting meetings with teachers across our district to better educate themselves about their priorities and concerns prior to this year’s negotiations. As a result of these meetings, the district has asked UTSWC to create a collaborative labor-management working group. This group would convene as part of the negotiations process and would bring more voices to the table as the negotiations committee works to develop creative solutions to any challenging issues that may arise. 
 
The District will continue to provide regular updates as the negotiation discussions proceed on this page.