Local Pictures
Classified Ads
 Announce Births
Email Us
Buy A Copy
Local Links

click here to
The Daily



10-20-03: Minster teachers may begin strike any time


The Minster Teachers Association has filed the necessary paperwork to go on strike if a contract with the school board is not reached soon.
Co-President Tad Colbeck told The Daily Standard this morning a strike could occur any time during the next couple of months.
“In order for the strike to be certified by the OEA (Ohio Education Association), we need to go through a laundry list showing we have met all legal obligations and have exhausted all other reasonable options,” Colbeck said, adding that association members met with the OEA and filed the paperwork last week.
The 67-members of the Minster Teachers Association have been working without a new contract for 111 days. The previous contract expired July 1, so teachers have been working under the terms of the old contract.
Contract negotiations began in early June, after original talks were postponed at the request of the board of education, which wanted to focus on the 6.5-mill operating levy that was approved by voters in May.
Colbeck said the teachers are frustrated and have agreed to numerous concessions, including huge cuts in benefits.
“We’ve accepted cuts, and we still have no contract,” Colbeck said this morning.
School board members have a special meeting planned for Wednesday to discuss the contract negotiations. The teachers association has reserved a 30-minute block of time at the Oct. 28 school board meeting and plans to address the board, Colbeck said. The union is encouraging the public to attend.
“We are not asking people to take either side,” Colbeck said. “We want them to come with an open mind and listen and see the impact this will have on their children’s education.”
The teachers’ association set up a fund at a local bank Oct. 8, and said it was not a strike fund, but to get “positive information out to the community,” Colbeck had said. The fund will be used to pay for items such as buttons or advertisements in newspapers, he added.
Colbeck stressed that it is still the union’s goal to agree to a contract.
“This is something that we do not want to do,” Colbeck said of a possible strike. “We want to attempt to avoid a strike at all costs. But negotiations with the present school board have not gone well, and we do not want to take any of our options off of the table.”
Superintendent Hal Belcher refused to comment on the issue this morning.


Phone: (419)586-2371,   Fax: (419)586-6271
All content copyright 2003
The Standard Printing Company
P.O. Box 140, Celina, OH 45822