Teachers' Union Members To Consider Counter To District

Aug 11, 2015

The teachers' union in the Little Rock School District plans to announce major changes in its contract with members at a meeting Tuesday evening. The Superintendent of the LRSD, Baker Kurrus, is proposing to change the contract with the union that has stood for 50 years.

The changes, backed by the state’s Department of Education, remove some bargaining rights but leave the union with negotiating power over salaries and benefits.

Superintendent Kurrus published details of the proposed contract and said in a statement that challenges facing the district require major changes. The LRSD must find $38 million a year by the 2017/2018 school year, to compensate for funds it previously received from a desegregation agreement.  

The head of the Little Rock Education Association, Cathy Koehler, told KUAR she is meeting with union membership at 5 p.m. Tuesday to consider a counter-offer to the district. She said the first priority is fully covered health insurance.

In 2013, the Arkansas State Supreme Court rejected an appeal from teachers’ unions in the Pulaski County Special School District, it contended the State Department of Education did not have authority to refuse to recognize the union’s contracts