Sherrard Teachers' Union, School Bd. Go Back to Bargaining Table - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Sherrard Teachers' Union, School Bd. Go Back to Bargaining Table

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UPDATE: Negotiations lasted until around 11:30 p.m. on Sunday night, February 16, 2014.

Todd Volkert with the Sherrard Education Association told KWQC they reached a tentative agreement with the school board.

He says instead of voting on when to strike at the next SEA meeting on Sunday, February 23, they will discuss and vote on the tentative agreement.

He says a strike is most likely "obsolete" at this time with the tentative agreement.

ORIGINAL: After about a year of back and forth between the Sherrard Education Association and the School Board, the clock is ticking for a contract agreement to be reached in time to head off a looming strike.

On Sunday, the School Board and the teachers' union went back to the bargaining table for formal contract talks. It was the first such meeting since the union voted to declare its intent to strike on February 9, 2014.

At the time of this posting, negotiations were still underway. The meeting started around 1 p.m. at the Sherrard High School. 

Last week, both the School Board president, Leslie Anderson, and a member of the Sherrard Education Association negotiations team, Todd Volkert, told us everyone was committed to staying as long as they had to at this weekend's meeting to try to reach a deal.

The School Board and SEA only have a week left to come to an agreement on a contract before the union votes to set a start date for the strike. That vote is scheduled for February 23.

The SEA is a wall-to-wall union, meaning everyone from teachers to cooks in the cafeteria and bus drivers are members. 

When we spoke to the School Board president last week, she said she was hopeful they would be able to make some major moves on the contract this weekend.

"I think there is a good opportunity for us to solve this. I think there is some really good dialogue right now. I think there's some very good direction. I'm optimistic, like I said, that we'll be able to settle it," Anderson said.

Heading into this negotiations session, the School Board and the teachers' union remained apart on contract length, meetings and professional development days, and special education, among other issues.

We will continue to bring you updates as we learn more on this developing story.