Saturday, August 24, 2013
MONMOUTH/INDEPENDENCE -- In their first mediation meeting in decades, Central School District and its classified staff walked out with a tentative agreement.Though not fully set -- classified staff meet Tuesday to ratify the agreement -- both sides are confident that it will end a months-long stalemate.Contract negotiations began in May, but quickly stalled. Both sides agreed in June to meet for mediation Aug. 21.The two parties had hang-ups with language issues involving family medical leave, seniority provisions and arbitration for demotions and dismissals.During mediation Aug. 21, both sides gave up equal ground, Denise Chase, Oregon School Employees Association chapter president, said."There was one issue that we walked away from the table feeling it wasn't resolved and we're weighing our options on that," she said. "We tentatively agreed the contract in its entirety. I'm very optimistic, but until people put pen to paper it's hard to know."