East Providence negotiations to continue Saturday
Contract negotiations in East Providence are scheduled to continue Saturday as teachers and administrators seek to resolve a two-year dispute. Teachers in East Providence have been working without a contract since 2008, and school officials unilaterally cut their pay and benefits last year. The school board recently floated another cost-cutting plan that would increase class sizes, lengthen the school day and reduce teacher salaries even further. They have now offered to resolve the dispute with teachers, and a union spokesperson says talks have intensified over the last two weeks.
Meanwhile, officials at the National Education Association of Rhode Island, the union that represents East Providence teachers, say they want to see what happens in East Providence before they decide whether to endorse the state’s application for $75 million in federal “Race to the Top” funds. State officials have set a deadline of Sunday afternoon for NEA locals to sign onto the application.