According to the district’s website, about three-quarters of the district’s yearly budget is used for salaries and benefits. Dubose declined to talk about the individual sticking points between the two sides, but did say that they are closer than when they began last year. He made it clear that teachers recognize that there needs to be a proper balance achieved.
“We recognize the economic times and as an association, we’re willing to look at some short-term sacrifices but not long term hardships,” said Dubose.
There’s been no indication of how long it may take both sides to reach a new contract with the help of a mediator. In his 10 years in the district, Dubose said he can not remember a time when both sides haven’t been able to sit down at the table and work out a contract. However, he is confident that it won’t take another 20 meetings with a mediator to do so.
“I mean, it’s unusual, but given the economic times that we’re in right now, this is where we are,” said Dubose.