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Luverne Teachers Reach Contract Deal

April 19, 2010, 6:02 PM by Katie Janssen

Luverne Teachers Reach Contract Deal
LUVERNE, MN - Luverne teachers are celebrating after reaching a tentative contract agreement with the school district. But the compromise wasn't exactly what teachers had in mind.

Monday, it was a celebration, but originally the rally was organized to protest the lack of compromise between teachers and the school board. Late Friday night, both parties came to an agreement.

"It's hard in the spring, we've been teaching, it's been a long winter, we didn't know what was going to happen, that we'd like to get fired back up again for the rest of this year and the future," Amy Sahly, teacher and co-president of the Luverne Education Association, said.

Sahly helped put together the meeting. The president of the advocacy group Education Minnesota was invited to speak.

"Our teachers have made historic sacrifices,” Tom Dooher said. “We're seeing record low settlements.  Teachers are doing more with less to do what they can to make schools strong and communities strong."

The details of the contract aren't available yet because it hasn't been approved by the school board, but Sahly says the disappointing thing is the raise. They received .75 percent when they asked for one percent.

"I think we decided it was probably the best we're going to get this year, so we accepted it. People wanted to be done with this process, and quit wondering what will happen and how long this will go on," Sahly said.

Sahly also says the district isn't kicking in more money for health insurance even though rates are increasing, so some of the district's veteran teachers will actually bring home less money than last year.

The school board will vote to approve the agreement at its meeting Thursday night.  The school district's superintendent declined to comment Monday.

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