DeLand, FL - Today's (September 17) Impasse Hearing between Volusia County Schools negotiators and the Volusia United Educators bargaining team got underway with a detailed explanation of the procedures to be followed during the hearing by Volusia County School Board attorney Ted Doran. Then things got a little louder.
When Dorn finished, a teacher speaking on behalf of VUE, talked about errors in the agenda notebook provided for all parties at the hearing. This was followed by comments from Doran, stating that the district did all the work and asking why the union was trying to make changes to the district's exhibits.
School Board member Ruben Colon questioned when VUE received the information. The reply was earlier this week. He said he was struggling with receiving a pack of papers from the union just ten minutes before the hearing was set to begin.
The teacher representing VUE continued with the list of issues and errors with the notebook handed out by the district. Doran admonished her, saying, "You're obligation was to meet the obligation set forth by the chairman of this board. It's as simple as that. Now, what are the ramifications of your failure? I don't know that there are any. But, the fact is, you're not going to sit here and tell us that you did the best you could."
VUE President Elizabeth Albert asked to speak and expressed her displeasure with the way Doran had spoken to the teacher representative. "I do not believe that tone is absolutely necessary. I think it is a demonstration, a reactionary attempt to try to control every facet of everything that is accomplished." Albert also said that VUE had agreements with the district, down to the arrangement of the room that was absolutely not adhered to. "If you want to use the word failure, I then would suggest that that's a fail on your side."
School Board Chair Ida Wright made the decision to accept the paperwork present by VUE. The first speakers during VUE's presentation were Karen and Christopher Weinrich, married to each other and with about fifty years of teaching experience between them. They talked about what teachers are dealing with between scheduling issues, the fact that social distancing guidelines are not being followed in many classrooms, pointing out that the six-foot distance should be maintained whether masks are being worn or not
After the presentations are given, it will be up to the School Board to make the decisions on what happens next. Check back with News Daytona Beach for updates.