Congratulations to the teachers, support staff and Kenai Peninsula Borough School District on their successful three-year contract negotiations.
The parties used an “Interest Based Bargaining” process this year. Cathy Carrow, KPEA president, said, “We used a federal mediator as our trainer who instructed us in such things as active listening, open dialogue and searching for solutions.”
That sounds to us like the curriculum for a great class to teach students. Let’s see, “active listening” couldn’t we all do more of that? Followed by “open dialogue” we only assume this could help the communication process. And then there is “searching for solutions” this sounds almost too logical and too easy to succeed.
But it has worked so far. We can only hope that the contract is approved by the Kenai Peninsula Education Association and Kenai Peninsula Education Support Association members and by the board of education.
This process appears to have proven that contract negotiations don’t have to be marred by name calling and animosity to get results.
What a great lesson for our students that even weighty issues that have been fraught with contention in the past can be discussed and resolved without a major battle ensuing.
After all, the real losers in any contract negotiation battle is the kids, since that’s what education is all about.
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