by Steev Riccardo
Oxford – The Oxford School Committee signed off on a new three- year contract with the Oxford Education Association (OEA) between teachers and the schools this past Monday night at its bi-monthly meeting at Oxford High School.
Amy Belhumer, who is a teacher at the Oxford Middle School and the incoming President of the OEA, was happy with the negotiations.
“This year we sat down, just school committee members, just teachers, and the superintendent, and worked out the contract together without lawyers,” said Belhumer.
“I think it worked out very well with the resources that we had and we came to an amicable agreement together as two groups and there was not a lot of anger or resentment.”
The term of the agreement between the union and the schools is for three years, versus the one-year contracts of previous years.
School Committee chairman Daniel Coonan praised both sides for getting the agreement done and singled out the work of former school committee member Marc Peterson and current member and former chairperson Brenda Ennis for their outstanding efforts in doing so.
The Committee also paid tribute to and honored Oxford High School band director Alton Baggett and the school band for their excellent accomplishments this year and years past.
“We have a very special night because our band director Alton Baggett is going to allow his students to present all their accomplishments from this year,” said Superintendent of Schools Allen Himmelberger.
“We are very proud of all that they have been able to accomplish because Alton Baggett literally is a one-man band.”
“It has been extremely rewarding working with these kids and no matter how seemingly low we start out with, the amount of music we can play by the end of the year, they are doing college level work,” said Baggett, who has been the band director since 1998.
Band captain Lauren Puishys and lieutenant captain Laura Holmes also addressed the committee and told them about their trip to Riverside Church in New York City and the awards they received while they were. They also talked about the sightseeing and other activities they were able to take part in while in the Big Apple.
Lastly, in what Himmelberger called “one of the most important meetings of the year, the committee heard representatives from all the school buildings and school programs present to the school committee for “perusal and approval the reading plans, the improvement plans, and handbook changes.”
Himmelberger said, “It is a very important part of what the school committee does.” They were also presented end-of-year reports from program directors, special education technology, curriculum, and Title I.
The committee will meet again on June 18 at Oxford High School in a public meeting.
- Wednesday, 13 June 2012
- Posted in Categories: : News