The Cleveland Schools and the Cleveland Teachers Union will go to the bargaining table in January. As ideastream's Lisa Ann Pinkerton reports, both parties hope to spend the six months negotiating long term priorities, rather than bickering over individual issues.
The District and Union will engage in what's known as Interest Based Bargaining, a relatively new bargaining approach that identifies major goals key to both sides and seeks mutually agreeable solutions for reaching them. Cleveland Teacher's Union President Jo Anne DeMarco says this method is more collaborative than traditional collective bargaining.
Jo Anne DeMarco: It's cooperative, everyone's go the same issues, or you at least match the issues. And you try to make it a more efficient organization.
DeMarco says Cleveland Schools CEO Eugene Sanders employed a version of this method while leading the Toledo Schools. In preliminary talks, the issues of salaries, healthcare, and school discipline and safety rank high on the lists of both the district and the teacher's union. Formal negotiations will begin in the last week of January. The current contract went into effect in 2001 and was extended for two additional years. It expires in June. Lisa Ann Pinkerton, 90.3.