NJ schools’ union says union is negotiating with schools about union contract

NJ schools are negotiating with their union for a new contract, a day after a high school union leader said he was fired.

Union leaders at St. Elizabethsville High School in Newark announced the union’s plans for a union vote Friday, but said the school board had not made a final offer.

The schools union was formed in 2017 after the state cut teachers’ pensions and increased the salaries of union members.

St. Elizabeth’sville’s president, John Lefkowitz, said the union wants to bargain with the school district for a better contract.

“The school board has not offered any new or significant proposals, and they have been consistent in their refusal to negotiate with us,” Lefkevowitz said in a statement.

“This is the first time we have seen a union representing a school district in this position, and we are hopeful that the new union can get a better deal for our members.”

Lefkowicz said the district’s board voted last month to cut the salaries and pensions of unionized teachers.

The district says the move was necessary to improve the school system, and a vote is scheduled for next week.

The school district has said the decision was made to cut pay for unionized employees because of a reduction in union members’ pension contributions, which the district says is not sustainable.

Lefkevich said the strike action, which began Thursday, was necessary because the union is not paying dues to the district.

The union has not endorsed any candidates in the November election, but has endorsed some candidates who support the school union.

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