Kenai Peninsula Borough School District employees hold signs for a fair contract at Thursday’s special board of education meeting, May 16, 2019, In Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Victoria Petersen/Peninsula Clarion)

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District employees hold signs for a fair contract at Thursday’s special board of education meeting, May 16, 2019, In Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Victoria Petersen/Peninsula Clarion)

District employees take vote on whether to strike

A majority vote would authorize the strike.

School district employees are voting on whether or not they plan to strike after contract negotiations were left unresolved last week.

Since May 8, the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District and two employee associations, Kenai Peninsula Education Association and Kenai Peninsula Education Support Association, have been negotiating a contract in several collective bargaining meetings. Thursday’s session ended with no contract, and no plans for further meetings.

“Negotiations between teachers and classified school employees, including classroom paraeducators, custodians, secretaries, nurses and food service staff working for the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District have deteriorated leaving both unions looking at a possible strike,” a Thursday press release from the Kenai Peninsula Education Association said.

Before last week’s contract negotiations ended in a standstill, the associations took a soft survey to gauge members’ willingness to strike if their most recent proposal was rejected by the district. David Brighton, president of the Kenai Peninsula Education Association, said around 84% of their certified members were in support of a strike.

A more official vote is underway. A majority vote would authorize the strike. Employees and the associations will choose a strategic time to start the strike, according to a presentation posted on the Kenai Peninsula Education Association’s Facebook page on Sunday. Should a strike be approved, the association will hold meetings over the summer to prepare employees on how to strike successfully.

The associations are required to give the district a 72-hour notice ahead of any strike. District employees cannot be fired for participating in a legal strike.

For over a year, contract negotiations have snagged on the rising cost of health care. A previous agreement effective through June 2018 remains in use for employees without contracts.

More in News

Drummers perform during a celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Dena’ina Wellness Center in Kenai, Alaska, on Friday, July 12, 2024. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Kenaitze tribe celebrates 10 years of ‘far-fetched dream’ at wellness center

Community members recognized the work done at the Dena’ina Wellness Center over the past decade

The Kenai Safeway is seen on Wednesday, July 20, 2022. (Camille Botello/Peninsula Clarion)
Kenai and Soldotna Safeways may be sold under proposed Kroger-Albertsons merger

The local stores will be sold to CS Wholesale Grocers only if the merger overcomes suit from the FTC

Sockeye salmon caught in a set gillnet are dragged up onto the beach at a test site for selective harvest setnet gear in Kenai, Alaska, on Tuesday, July 25, 2023. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Draft plan published for disbursement of $11.5 million in 2021 and 2022 ESSN disasters

Public comment will be accepted for the draft spend plan until July 24

The Kasilof River is seen from the Kasilof River Recreation Area, July 30, 2019, in Kasilof, Alaska. (Photo by Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion)
King salmon fishing closed on Kasilof starting Monday

The emergency order is being issued to protect returning king salmon, citing weak returns

Soldotna City Hall is seen on Wednesday, June 23, 2021, in Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Soldotna’s city council appropriates funds for FY 2025 capital projects

Improvements are described for streets, police facility, Soldotna Creek Park and Soldotna Community Memorial Park

Gina Plank processes sockeye salmon caught on the first day of Kenai River dipnetting with her table set up on the bank of the Kenai River in Kenai, Alaska, on Wednesday, July 10, 2024. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Kenai River open for dipnetting

As of Tuesday, a total of 226,000 sockeye had been counted in the Kenai River’s late run

Assembly Vice President Tyson Cox speaks during a meeting of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly in Soldotna, Alaska, on Tuesday, June 18, 2024. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Assembly won’t pursue further discussion on tabled bed tax resolution

Members say they’re going to work on a new version of the idea this winter

Gov. Mike Dunleavy pictured with members of the House majority after signing the fiscal year 2025 budget bills, Thursday, June 27, 2024, in Anchorage, Alaska. From left to right: Reps. Stanley Wright, Tom McKay, Thomas Baker, Craig Johnson, Kevin McCabe, Julie Coulombe and Laddie Shaw. (Photo provided by Office of the Governor)
Dunleavy signs capital budget with $3.7M in state funding for Kenai Peninsula, vetoes $3.3M

Roughly $90 million in federal funding also allocated to Kenai Peninsula

Alaska State Troopers logo.
Soldotna man arrested Friday after 30-minute police chase

The man had an outstanding warrant for felony probation violation

Most Read