Southern Fulton School District teachers still negotiating contract two years later

March 24, 2012|By JENNIFER FITCH |

WARFORDSBURG, Pa. — Southern Fulton School District teachers remain without a contract more than two years after negotiations started.

Negotiating teams for the Southern Fulton School Board and Southern Fulton Education Association, the teachers’ union, started meeting at the bargaining table in January 2010. The last contract expired June 30, 2010.

Neither side would comment on the current status of negotiations.

“I’m not at liberty to discuss that,” Superintendent Kendra Trail said.

The number of years covered by the new contract is one item being negotiated, she said.

Southern Fulton Education Association negotiator Jon Diffenderfer said the two sides are bargaining in good faith, although he would not discuss sticking points.

“I am not at liberty to discuss (that), since negotiations are ongoing,” he wrote in an email.

The teachers have not gone on strike, Diffenderfer said.

“We are working to prevent this from happening,” he said.

The starting salary of a teacher in the Southern Fulton School District is $36,219, and the top of the pay scale is $61,711, Trail said.

The average salary is about $50,000, Trail said.

The new contract would cover 65 employees, she said.

Representing the school board at the bargaining table are Trail and board members Tim Mellott, Allen Morton, Patrick Bard and Mark Mosemann. Representing the Southern Fulton Education Association are Diffenderfer and fellow teacher Karen Solomon, as well as Terrie Holter from the Pennsylvania State Education Association.

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