Rutland S.W. teachers threaten a strike

— Teachers in the Rutland Southwest Supervisory Union have threatened a strike according to a union representative at Poultney High School.

Kaitlin Cioffi, a science teacher at PHS, told news reporters March 29 that 65 teachers from schools in Poultney, Middletown Springs, Tinmouth and Wells will strike if the union cannot come to an agreement with supervisory officials.

Teachers are unhappy with current salaries and benefits.

Teachers have been without a contract in excess of 600 days. The Vermont-NEA said this is the longest stalemate in the union’s history in Vermont.

Teachers are seeking a 3.5 percent pay increase in pay or approximately $1,700 per year, per teacher.

While teachers are in total agreement on pay increases, not all teachers are in agreement with Rutland Southwest’s wish for them to contribute 1 percent more to their individual health plans. Some teachers agree to the idea, others not.

A Rutland Southwest Supervisory Union Board meeting March 29 at Poultney High School, at 7 p.m., may decide the impasse.

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