May 31, 2005 – 6:00 p.m.


Recorder:              Stephanie White

Location:              Boardroom


Patty Turley

Madeline Jorgenson

Darbi Haffner

Cindy Bandow

Mary Jo Husiman

Janet Dunham

James Sundell

Judy Croce

Mike Brotherton

Brian Hungerford

Denise Pratt

Kathryn Hedrick

Wanda McClure

Tom Endersby

Kathleen Rodden-Nord

Stephanie White

Cal Fagan, Barb Coolman, Janet Dunham, and Galen Carpenter were absent for the association.

James – We have a proposal for you on Article 7 – School Work Year.  We got our heads together to come up with what we feel the school work year is.  We feel it’s a change in the status quo. If we are unable to reach an agreement on this article, we feel it would be considered a change in working conditions if over 171 student contact days are scheduled.  We feel it would be an unfair labor practice.  We would like to reach an agreement on this article.

Article 7 – School Work Year

James went over the association’s proposed changes to Article 7.  Patty – There is an increase in student contact days in our proposal.  James – Yes, we added one student contact day in our proposal.  The state only requires 990 hours, so we added one day to meet those requirements.  Patty – The teachers added one student contact day back a few years ago because we asked to be at the state average for contract days.  We asked that the one day that was added be a student contact day.  JCEA is responsible for adding that day.  Brian – We have been viewing this article as one with an economic impact and I doubt we will be able to settle this without settling the other articles.  The board adopted a calendar.  We haven’t changed the status quo until we reach that 172nd day and we will continue to bargain about this.  The board was very clear in adopting this calendar that changes may be made later due to agreements we reach in negotiations.    I don’t believe that if we go beyond June 30th we can’t adopt a calendar with more than 171 student contact days.  We view this article as being intermixed with economic impacts.  We will probably need to settle this with other economic articles.  James – Which calendar did the board adopt?  Kathleen – The second version.  James – When?  Kathleen – May 23rd.  James – This is our proposal.  Patty – What are the economic impacts?  Brian – I am not sure exactly what the economic impacts are.  The statement in subsection C on grading days, is that current practice?  Darbi – No, it was part of the last discussion.  Kathleen – It doesn’t necessarily reflect past practice.

Article 11 – Sick Leave

James passed out the association’s proposal on Article 11 – Sick Leave.  James – A1 – We added Members who leave employment with the District and who have used more sick leave days than have been earned as of their separation from the District, shall have an amount equivalent to those unearned sick leave days withheld from their final paycheck, less the number of days granted for their use from the sick leave bank.  We put this in to address the district’s concern expressed at the last meeting about people using all of their sick leave and then terminating employment with the district prior to the end of their first year.  B2 – We are still proposing to change 3 days to 60 days for immediate family.  B3 – We are proposing to go back to current contract language.  G – Changing the date to October 31 is ok with us.  In the fifth paragraph in G, we added No member who has established eligibility for long-term disability or PERS disability may receive days from the sick leave bank.  The last paragraph of G, we added Denial of a request to receive days from the sick leave bank may not be grieved under this contract.

Brian – In B2, there’s no definition attached to immediate family?  James – It’s the same definition as in B1.  Brian – Is that for any illness?  Not just those illnesses covered by FMLA?  James – That is correct.  Kathleen – Thank you for coming back around and addressing some of our concerns regarding sick leave.

Article 31 – Re-Employment of Retirees

Brian handed out the district’s proposal on Article 31 – Re-Employment of Retirees.  Brian – The first paragraph is the same as your May 4, 2005 proposal.  ‘A’ – We added except as modified by this Agreement.  In some areas they may not have the same rights as a bargaining unit member.  ‘B’ – The same as you had proposed.  ‘C’ – Our proposal would be Re-employed unit members may not carry forward sick leave accrued during their employment with the District, but shall accrue sick leave in the same manner as un-retired members of the bargaining unit.  This is a cost issue for the district.  We don’t want an employee retiring and then getting re-hired and using their 70 days of sick leave.  We would then have to pay them as well as a substitute.  ‘D’ – The re-hired retiree would get the insurance and stipend.  ‘E’ – We modified this one to read, Members who are required by law to make contributions to PERS shall be responsible for the employee portion of such contributions.  By law we must pay the employer portion, but we don’t have to pay the employee portion.

Patty – Do you have a list of exceptions to treating re-hired employees like regular employees?  Brian – In E, they would pay their own PERS.  We have a change in Article 1 that also shows these changes.  In section C, the would start with 10 days of sick leave, where the contract says that they can carry forward up to 75 days.  Patty – If they come from another district, they can carry forward their sick leave?  Brian – Yes.  Patty – But, if they are retired from our district and are re-hired, they cannot?  Brian – That is correct.  Kathleen – This would not cover an employee that has retired from another district.  Patty – So, employees who retire from another district and are hired on at our district are not considered new hires?  Brian – They would be considered a newly hired employee.  Kathleen – They wouldn’t be getting a stipend from our district.  Patty – I understand that.  You have made some movement with this and we appreciate that.  I just have a problem with treating re-hired retirees different than new hired employees.  Brian – The tradeoff is that the new employee is not receiving the stipend from us.  Patty – I understand that.

Article 1 – Recognition

Brian passed out the district’s proposal on Article 1 – Recognition.  Brian – Section A.  We added, and employees hired to work after retirement as outlined below and as modified by other provisions of this Agreement.  Your proposal struck out the word “consecutive”.  By taking that out, a substitute could sub in the district for a few years and then all of a sudden hit their 61st day and become a bargaining unit member.  Cindy – We could say in a work year.  Brian – We may still have a problem with adding that.  Darbi – If someone is subbing for 59 days and is sick on the 60th day, this means they would have to go back to day 1.  Kathleen – Is it your thought that this be for a work assignment, same teacher, same building?  Darbi – It would be subbing for the same teacher in a single work assignment.  Mike B. – If the purpose of having the sub in the classroom is for continuity, we would be changing subs all of the time so they do not become bargaining unit members with your proposal.  Brian – Because of financial reasons, the district may choose to do that.  Patty – Does the word “contract” mean anything to you?  Brian – For temporary employees, yes.  But for substitutes this would mean that on the 61st day of subbing (not continuous with your proposal) they would become a bargaining unit member.  Patty – Would the district be willing to make some kind of provision for an illness or death in the family?  Brian – We would be willing to discuss that.  Cindy – Is the reason you don’t want substitutes to become bargaining unit members is because you don’t want to pay for insurance?  Brian – Partially; it does cost more.  The pay also increases from the sub rate to the teacher’s rate.

Brian – In D3 – We included, Upon becoming members of the bargaining unit, substitutes and temporaries, and re-hired retirees shall be covered by all provisions of this Agreement except Article 20 – Reduction in Force, Article 10 – Teacher Discipline, Article 13 – Leaves of Absence, and Article 22 – Assignments and Transfer.  If we re-hire a retiree, we don’t see it advantageous to then provide them with a leave of absence. Patty – Oh, ok.  Brian – A couple of pieces from your proposal are not included.  We did not include the ‘probationary’ section.  That is worrisome to us because we use those three years of probationary status to check and see if an employee is a good fit for our district.  I don’t think it is in the best interest of the district to change this.  We need that time to see if the employee is the ‘best fit’ for our district.  In section F – we feel that the current statutory requirement is enough.  We can’t just contract out services; we have to bargain for that.  Your language would take away the district’s statutory right to subcontract.  Patty – In D3 you are proposing to eliminate Leave of Absence.  That contains FMLA and OFLA, are you not going to allow those?  Brian – If they have met the requirements, then legally we cannot take that away from them.  Patty – The district has taken a new procedure with defining temporary employees.  The family and consumer studies teacher was funded as a temporary position and the teacher in that position is a highly sought after teacher.  Kathryn – Actually, she had been laid off from her former district when we hired her.  Patty – I object to keeping her as a temporary employee just because the district doesn’t want to have to cover her under Article 10 & 13.  How long can you keep someone on as a temporary teacher?  Wanda – I think two years.  Brian – She knew the position was temporary when she took it.  Cindy – How do you know that someone can only be temporary for two years?  Wanda – Maybe that was at the last place I worked.  Kathleen – We will talk about that some more in caucus.

Article 20 – Reduction in Force

Brian handed out the district’s proposal on Article 20 – Reduction in Force.  Brian – Referring back to our original proposal, we did not propose any changes; the association did.  We have come back with a compromise.  One question I have is, is seniority based on the hire date or the employee’s actual service date?  Mary Jo – I believe the hire date is the same as the first day of service.  Darbi – No; there was a group of us who were hired at the same time, and our hire date is the date the board approved the hiring.  Brian – We will take a look at that.  In ‘a’ – Seniority – your proposal states that any leave of absence will be counted as continuous service; we are proposing that just paid leaves of absence are counted as continuous service.

#2, JCEA proposed: An employee with more seniority, whose position is being eliminated, shall have the right to displace another employee with less seniority whose assignment he/she is licensed and competent (if applicable) to perform.  We used most of that, with the following changes: Except as provided below, a member with more seniority, whose position is being eliminated as a result of reduction in force, shall have the right to displace a less senior member whose assignment the more senior employee is licensed and endorsed to fill.

#3, JCEA proposed: If the District desires to retain a “teacher” with less seniority than a “teacher” to be laid off, the District must prove that the “teacher” to be retained has significantly more competence than the more senior “teacher”.  We substituted the word ‘member’ for ‘teacher’, and took the language directly from the statute.

#4, your proposal states that the teacher will have 20 days to notify the district of their willingness to complete the additional training or education to qualify for retention.  Our concern with that is if someone undergoes additional training, that doesn’t necessarily mean they are more qualified to teach that area.

#5 – I have a question about your number 5.  There is a part of statute that if an administrator is reduced in force, and they were a teacher in the district at one point, they can be moved back into a teaching position.  James – We don’t want an administrator to be moved to the bargaining unit and have to layoff a teacher in the process.  Brian – You couldn’t bump a teacher by placing an administrator in that position?  James – Yes.  Brian – I understand what you are saying.

Brian – Our definition of competence is the same as yours, except that we are saying 5 years experience, and you are saying 10.  You are saying that grade level means what your license says.  To us, that doesn’t mesh with the statement that competence isn’t based solely on being licensed to teach.  Our definition of grade level is: the grade that the member who is scheduled for layoff is currently assigned to, as well as the grade directly above and directly below that grade.  James – I need some clarification on the grade level issue.  How many grades does a typical middle school teacher teach?  Tom – One, maybe two.  James – If there is a fifth grade opening, how does a teacher qualify to move into that position?  Kathleen – They would have to have the correct licensure and experience over the past five years in that grade, or one grade level up or one grade level down.  Patty – Can we change the language in 4b to include that?  Brian – We will talk about that.  James – We have an interest in representing our members and giving them an opportunity to gain competency; that is why we are proposing 10 years.  Brian – We have a very big interest in making sure the person is the best fit for the job.  We accept your changes in section F.

Break 7:40 – 7:50 p.m.

Article 9 – Complaint Procedure and Article 10 – Teacher Discipline

Brian – We are presenting Article 9 in conjunction with Article 10.  In Article 10, our last proposal suggested to delete ‘C’ completely.  We are proposing to reinstate ‘C’ with the deletion of just cause and adding, the standards set forth by the Fair Dismissal Appeals Board.  We have deleted “reprimand” in ‘A’ and added, For purposes of this article, “discipline” shall be defined as a written reprimand or suspension without pay.  We view a reprimand as a form of discipline.

‘B’ – We propose to make a clarification by adding, or the dismissal or non-extension of a contract teacher for reasons related to the teacher’s performance.  Patty – What do you mean by teacher’s performance?  Brian – Performance is related to classroom performance as opposed to misconduct.  Patty – There are a lot of things in the district policy that tell a teacher how to perform in the classroom, I don’t think we need to have it in the contract as well.  Brian – Again, we are offering these two articles together.  We are still interested in the administrator having the authority to sign complaints.  James – The association proposed a definition of discipline; your definition says that verbal reprimand is not discipline.  Brian – Correct.  Oral is not written down.  Once it is in writing it is a written reprimand.  You could also say it is a written record of oral reprimand.  It is my belief, with the exception of oral reprimand, that our definition covers what is considered as discipline.  Patty – If it is already defined, why put it in the contract?  Brian – You don’t want it in there because you want the definition to be broader.  James – It is pretty clear that we have a disagreement on the definition of discipline.  Patty – JCEA feels very strongly on holding on to the use of just cause.  Can you think of a recent situation where having just cause created a negative situation for the district?  Brian – Yes, I can think of two situations last year.

Brian – We will have written proposals for Article 11 at the next meeting.  I am not sure if we will have one for Article 7.  James – We have a question on Article 31.  How does the district feel this impacting the current employee?  Kathleen – It is my recollection that whatever ended up happening in bargaining could change his current situation.  Brian – He could be placed on at step 10, unless we bargained something else.  James – We couldn’t, in good faith, go back to this employee and tell them that they will have about a $9,000 pay decrease.  Kathleen – When the board agreed to this hire-back, it was understood that we would not be paying PERS on this employee or insurance, and now we are paying the stipend, PERS, and insurance.

James – Article 1 – We would be willing to accept the district’s proposal if Article 10 and Article 13 were eliminated in D3.  Kathleen – I was thinking that we could extend the teacher discipline for the temporary employees, but not for substitutes.

Caucus 8:55 – 9:00 p.m.

Brian – We are ok with deleting Article 13 and Article 10, except for with substitutes.  The administrators do not get to choose the subs, the employees do that.

James – We will get together and come back next time with a written proposal.

The next meeting will be on June 13, 2005 from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at the District Office.  The meetings are open to the public, and minutes will be posted on the district website at www.junctioncity.k12.or.us.  (Just click on Board Info, and then click on Meeting Minutes Archives; there will be a link for Licensed Negotiation Minutes.)

Adjourn 9:07 p.m.