2012-07-26 / Local News

Northport teachers expected to ratify deal


ERIN DEKKER, her husband, Matt, and their son Gavin try to stay dry during yesterday’s rain in Leland. ERIN DEKKER, her husband, Matt, and their son Gavin try to stay dry during yesterday’s rain in Leland. The Northport Education Association was expected yesterday to ratify a new three-year contract and the Northport Public School Board of Education was expected to approve that contract at a special meeting later in the evening.

Superintendent Jeff Tropf said negotiations were amicable.

“I would be surprised if it didn’t pass unanimously by both the board of education and the association,” Tropf said.

There are 21 members in the association.

Some very dramatic changes were made in negotiations this year, Tropf said, due to changes made by the Michigan Legislature that now take several topics off the bargaining table. Prohibited topics include placement of teachers, reduction and recall of teachers, teacher evaluations, teacher discipline and discharge and privatization. The new laws give more discretion to local boards of education. They also create more work for boards, which must enact new board policies and, in many cases, rewrite master agreements, Tropf said.

They also change the negotiating process, Tropf said.

The current three-year contract expires on Aug. 31, with the new agreement, if ratified, going into effect on Sept. 1. Teachers received 2 percent raised during each year of that contract.

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