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No Discussions Seen Thursday in Lake Forest Teacher Strike

Representatives of Board and union did not meet Wednesday and Board President Sharon Golan does not expect a session Thursday.

Representatives of the two sides in the Lake Forest High School teacher strike did not meet Wednesday, are not likely to talk today and both blame the other for the stalemate likely to keep students out of class another day.

“We did not meet Wednesday and I feel that we will not meet tomorrow,” said. Golan says the teachers will not meet and the educators claim the Board will not negotiate.

“We made them an offer and they didn’t offer us anything back,” said arguing the Board is trying to force the teachers to negotiate against themselves.

Gress explained the union received a written offer Tuesday afternoon, responded to the District with a proposal in writing and has yet to receive a response. His group is unwilling to resume negotiations without a reply.

Golan does not dispute Gress’s version of the facts when it comes to written offers, but is firm in her belief the Board is negotiating in good faith and did not ignore the teachers’ proposal. She believes the District acted.

“We did not receive a written proposal from the Union last night,” Golan said. “The supposal (an oral offer) we received we responded to. We rejected it.” The Board also said on the school’s website it was open to meeting but the LFEA will not.

Gress rejects the statement his group is unwilling to negotiate. He indicated union representatives waited for an hour Tuesday hoping the Board would respond to the union’s suggestions but the federal mediator reported the District would not respond.

“As of Wednesday, the last offer was made by the LFEA,” Gress said. “Since the mediator ended negotiations last night (Tuesday), the LFEA has not been contacted by the BOE. The LFEA has never said that it would not meet with the BOE and is still awaiting a response to our financial proposal.”

The two sides have also issued different reports and statement demonstrating the financial health of the District. At Tuesday’s Board meeting, the proposed budget for the coming school year indicated the District could barely afford to pay the teachers its proposed 2.7 percent increase.

“You cannot dispute those numbers,” Golan said. “It would be helpful if we could start with the same set of numbers.” When Deputy Superintendent for Finance and Operations Allen Albus introduced the proposed budget Tuesday, he did not indicate whether he used the Board’s proposal or the suggestion of the LFEA to craft the project.

“Our assumptions are built on current market conditions,” Albus said but did not define the market. “If we have to amend it we will do that.”

Meanwhile, the school will be open for students today but there will be no instruction. College visits and the college application process will continue uninterrupted. A complete strike plan is contained on the District website.

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Love2read September 14, 2012 at 05:38 AM
@Jen, you're correct. Teachers need to work within the free market for employment that the rest of us work in. @Louis, you're misguided. My wife is a teacher. My best friend is a teacher. When we go to parties, they are filled with teachers. Believe me, I know lots of teachers and they do not work any more hours than the rest of us that are conscientious and work hard at our jobs. @ Go Scouts! Your logic is flawed. You would normally want to fix the problem, not suggest that someone take a job with a flawed compensation scale. My wife is a teacher and she knows that she is overcompensated. As I've said in other posts here on this subject, my family is grateful for all the the teaching profession has provided to us. We are also embarrassed at the outrageous pension that will be provided to our family. The big problem with the Lake Forest teachers as a whole is that while we are grateful for what teaching has provided to our family, they (the LFEA) are ungrateful. That's UNGRATEFUL, all in caps, on purpose :)
Jeff September 14, 2012 at 10:41 AM
@Deadcat Did you just complain that a teacher took a maternity leave? Or are you blaming that teacher for the temporary replacement that the administration hired? Yikes, we are really traveling upstream now.
Jeff September 14, 2012 at 10:45 AM
@Love2read Public Education is not part of the free market. You need to stop telling yourself that this is anything remotely like private industry. And just because your wife is a lazy teacher, that doesn't mean all teachers are. With that attitude and work ethic, it sounds like she would not fit in at at LFHS.
Jeff September 14, 2012 at 10:47 AM
It's a shame, @Love2Read that you are so close minded that you won't even look at the logic in the post I made, and instead respond with childish, emotion-laden retorts.
LF Resident/Parent September 14, 2012 at 02:23 PM
According to the BOE's statement they have agreed to remove the 2 Tier system and phase in the HMO contributions. Accoring to the LFEA websie they were opposed to those items. So with those items addressed isn't it time we all speak the truth that it was about the money all along?

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