The Evergreen Public Schools Board of Directors ratified a recently approved contract with the Public School Employees of Evergreen large group union at its Tuesday evening meeting.
The union — which represents approximately 1,000 classified staff members in the district, including about 650 paraeducators — bargained with district officials for months until ratifying a new deal on Dec. 14. The primary sticking points that had slowed negotiations centered around wage raises and training.
Board member Rob Perkins said he was glad the sides were able to reach an agreement after a handful of animated board meetings featuring paraeducators detailing the realities of their struggles on what they deemed to be an inadequate working contract. The stories, he said, will soon be helpful in lobbying state legislators for increased funding later this year, as statistics are rarely as compelling as first-hand accounts.
“The testimonies that people brought forward in connection with the contract negotiations showed us that we have stories to connect to the numbers,” Perkins said.