Union, School Board Reach Tentative Agreement


BEA President Fran Brock addresses the media after reaching a tentative agreement with the Burlington School Board in October, 2016. | Photo: Alexandre Silberman/Register

After over 10 hours of slow negotiations between the Burlington Education Association (BEA) and the school board, a tentative agreement has been reached.

The deal will prevent a teacher strike and allow for all normal school operations, including athletics, to take place. The union will vote early next week to ratify the agreement, according to BEA President Fran Brock.

Mediator Ira Lobel came out of the negotiation room to share the news with tired members of the media. Some had arrived as early as 8:30 a.m.

“I think both sides are pleased that we have reached a tentative agreement,” Lobel said. “I think everybody should be happy that the students will be in school tomorrow with no aggravations.”

He added that the terms will not be disclosed until the agreement is ratified.

Members of the negotiations team of both parties exited the district offices quickly, dodging questions from reporters. Brock stopped briefly in the parking lot to answer a few questions.

An unfair labor practice complaint filed by the BEA with the Vermont Department of Labor last week will be negated once the agreement is ratified, Brock said.

“We don't have to strike,” she said. “They can all be teachers, which is what they do best.”

Below is a social media recap of the mediation proceedings, including tweets and videos: