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Kinnelon School Contract Could Be Ratified Soon

Superintendent 'hopeful' negotiation process is near conclusion.

After a year-and-a-half of negotiating, the Kinnelon Education Association (KEA) and Kinnelon Board of Education may agree on a new contract in the near future.

The KEA, which includes teachers, secretaries and other district employees, has been working with an expired contract since July 2011. In September, after months of disagreement between the board and KEA on a new contract, negotiations entered a fact-finding phase. 

Vickie Walsh, a field representative for the New Jersey Education Association who is assisting with the negotiations on the KEA end, said the report has been completed and was reviewed by the union's negotiating team on Thursday.

"The team will be recommending that the general membership ratify this agreement," Walsh said.

Walsh said the KEA is waiting to hear whether the board will agree to the terms.

"It is our sincere hope the board negotiations team will make the same recommendation to their constituents," she said.

The lengthy negotiation process has been due to what former school board president Margaret Zybrick described as a difference of opinion between both parties, particularly in regards to financial considerations. However, Kinnelon Public Schools Superintendent Diane DiGiuseppe said Monday that the board of education is moving in the direction of contract ratification.

"The board negotiation committee is also going to recommend the fact-finder's proposal for ratification," she said. "We're as hopeful as anyone."

Both DiGiuseppe and Walsh said the terms of the new contract are not able to be shared until both parties have had the opportunity to review and discuss its content with members. Once a memo of agreement is in place, the contract can be made public.

Sid January 15, 2013 at 04:39 PM
"Both DiGiuseppe and Walsh said the terms of the new contract are not able to be shared until both parties have had the opportunity to review and discuss its content with members. Once a memo of agreement is in place, the contract can be made public." -Why all the secrecy? The public is not allowed to know any details until AFTER the contract is signed. What BS.
KPD January 15, 2013 at 07:05 PM
Should be interesting to see the resulting contract when it is revealed. Also, the town, should recombine kindergarten into one building next year like it was in the past. There are no cost savings of splitting them up when the old building is still open, heated and lit each and every day.
Maribel Tehrani January 15, 2013 at 07:05 PM
After all, it is our tax dollars paying for these so called secret "terms." Don't get me wrong. My husband is a teacher in another district and I know what it's like to work without a contract. So I have a soft spot in my heart when it comes to theese issues.
fix a flat January 16, 2013 at 12:58 PM
Oh boy! The "new" board debuts with a spineless decision! Yep Kinnelon taxpayers, look for more of this! No one there to keep the watch. What does the new pres care-his wife is a teacher? BTW, with that in mind, he should be recusing himself from all voting related to these negotiations!

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