Niles teachers say layoffs not needed

Published 8:29 am Tuesday, March 16, 2004

By Staff
NILES -- The Niles District Education Association released a statement on Tuesday saying it thinks Niles Community Schools is using the possibility of teacher lay-offs as a negotiating tool to settle teacher contracts.
Those issues include health care, resolving the two-tier salary schedule and maintaining class sizes so they do not get too large.
In response, Niles Superintendent Doug Law said "the board anticipates a small layoff (10 or less) while we complete our budget process. It is our hope to have our staffing assignments done before the end of the school year," Law said.
He said the district does not anticipate any retirements this year because about 30 Niles teachers retired last year when the district offered a teacher buy-out plan.
The statement from Roberts said teachers, secretaries and bus drivers have been working all year without a contract.
The school district will be meeting with the association this afternoon to discuss further negotiations.
Roberts said the association will continue to actively negotiate with the district and will begin to use public demonstrations as a tactic to make the community aware of the issues that are out there.
He also said if any lay-offs do occur, the association will assist all teachers in searching for employment. "There is a shortage of teachers in certain areas of certification and we do not expect any teachers laid off to have trouble finding employment elsewhere," Roberts said.