Bethel board to vote on teachers’ contract

BETHEL TWP. — After spending almost 18 months in negotiations, the Bethel Education Association and the board of education have reached a tentative agreement on a contract. The board will vote on the contract at their meeting at 7 p.m. Monday, March 12.

Board president Jacob King and BEA president Traci Brewer put out a joint statement announcing the tentative salary agreement.

“I’m glad we reached agreement and that a majority of BEA members supported it,” Brewer said in the release that was shared online.

The BEA voted in favor of the contract on March 7.

The teachers worked for more than six months without a contract. BEA negotiations chair Abby Manson said that the teachers started preparing for negotiations more than 16 months ago. In the joint statement, she said that bargaining sessions were “always amicable,” but an agreement on salary could not be reached.

“The board of education is elated to have finalized an agreement with our teachers; they are the foundation of our educational programs. Our administrative team has worked countless hours working for resolution,” King said.

The board will vote on the final ratification of the contract Monday night.