Negotiations Tip: Check the Details

Don’t Delay Wrapping Up Your 2019-20 Agreement

As local association bargaining teams near the end of negotiations, NSEA Collective Bargaining Specialist Randy Gordon urges leaders to be deliberate in the process and to pay attention to details.

“Those last few steps are significant,” said Gordon. “Don’t let the relief of completing negotiations at the table interrupt your diligence in wrapping up the final details of your negotiated agreement.”

Whether you’re finalizing the 2019-20 negotiated agreement in January or completed bargaining in December, there are still important steps to address with the finished document. Gordon recommends that local association leaders:

  • Share: If you haven’t shared the settlement details with your NSEA Organizational Specialist, contact them with the key changes to the agreement (base increase, changes to benefits, etc.) and a timeline for the member ratification vote and board approval.  
  • Read and Review: Once the agreement is ratified and approved, thoroughly read through the final copy before signing.  Check every sentence for accuracy in language changes, changes to dates, salary schedules, extra duty positions, and insurance levels.  Increases in both health insurance premiums and deductible levels for 2019-20 will affect all EHA plans and need to be reflected in the agreement.
  • Attach: Include all appendices like salary schedules, extra duty pay, and variances or any board policy references, before signing and copying.  Some bargaining teams initial and date each and every attached page before making copies to ensure that the most current pages are included.
  • Report Online: In addition to sharing copies with members, it’s important to enter any changes to the agreement on the joint NASB/NSEA Settlement Reporting Site.  Your NSEA Organizational Specialist will share the login and password so your team can complete the form.  It’s important to update your side of the site so that any contradictions can be addressed.  School boards and administrators use that data to conduct North Star comparability studies, so any errors or contradicting information can create problems next fall when school districts prepare for the next round of bargaining.

Remember, your NSEA Organizational Specialist can answer questions and help establish a routine for completing the settlement process. Call your Organizational Specialist at 1-800-742-0047.