Kenai peninsula Borough School District administration, members from the Kenai Peninsula Education Association and the Kenai Peninsula Education Support Association meet at a collective bargaining session to continue contract negotiations for employees who have been without contracts for a year, on Wednesday, May 8, 2019, in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Victoria Petersen/Peninsula Clarion)

Kenai peninsula Borough School District administration, members from the Kenai Peninsula Education Association and the Kenai Peninsula Education Support Association meet at a collective bargaining session to continue contract negotiations for employees who have been without contracts for a year, on Wednesday, May 8, 2019, in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Victoria Petersen/Peninsula Clarion)

Educators set to strike Tuesday

Educators and staff will strike, starting Tuesday, a Friday night press release from two employee associations said.

Executive committees with the Kenai Peninsula Education Association and the Kenai Peninsula Education Support Association voted on Friday to notify the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District on their intent to strike starting at 7 a.m. Tuesday.

“The failure of the KPBSD to adequately address the Association’s primary concern of affordable healthcare premiums for public school employees continues to hinder an acceptable agreement,” the associations’ release said.

The district and the associations have been negotiation a contract for nearly 600 days, and bargaining has snagged on the rising cost of health care.

“The high cost of healthcare is causing educators and their families to leave the district and is becoming a barrier to recruiting and retaining high quality education professionals for our students,” David Brighton, KPEA said. “This is a crisis and the District has the power to fix it.

A previous agreement effective through June 2018 remains in use for employees without contracts.

An offer from the district was presented to the associations on Thursday, a press release from the district said.

The associations rejected the district’s offer at their Thursday bargaining session and made a counter proposal, with a deadline for the district to respond at 4 p.m., Friday.

After 4 p.m. Friday, the district released a press release noting they asked for additional information on the proposal from the associations.

After contract negotiations with the district hit a standstill in May, peninsula educators and staff voted May 22 to strike, with more than 75% of certified staff voting “yes” on a walkout.

“We understand the short-term impact a strike will have on students and families, but the long-term impacts of growing class sizes and shrinking communities because no one can afford to work here are far more serious,” Anne McCabe, president of KPESA, said. “The District can end this strike before it even begins if they decide to value our public school employees and offer them a fair contract.”

More in News

Alaska Senate President Peter Micciche speaks to reporters after a Senate floor session on the opening day of the second special legislative session on Wednesday, June 23, 2021, in Juneau, Alaska. Gov. Mike Dunleavy called the special session to address the budget. (AP Photo/Becky Bohrer)
Per diems add up for lawmakers

State lawmakers could make more than $85,000 in per diem payments and… Continue reading

Daniel Balserak and Luke Konson fish for salmon in Alaska. The pair has been traveling the country and catching every official state fish for the past 11 months. (Photo provided)
A gap year like no other

High school graduates defer college enrollment to fish in every state

Hikers look at the Harding Icefield in August 2015 in Kenai Fjords National Park, just outside of Seward, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Hiker rescued from Harding Icefield Trail

A hiker was airlifted off of the Harding Icefield Trail in Kenai… Continue reading

COVID-19 cases are rising and health officials say new variants are spurring the increase, even among the vaccinated. But health officials note the majority of hospitalizations and deaths are occurring in unvaccinated people. (Michael Lockett / Juneau Empire file)
COVID-19 surge continues

‘They’re getting sicker this time around’

Alaska State Troopers logo.
Weekend car accident leaves 1 dead

Alaska State Troopers reported another car accident fatality over the weekend, marking… Continue reading

Photo by Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion 
The Kenai River can be seen from the Funny River Campground on Sunday, June 23, 2019, in Funny River, Alaska.
State seeks funding for Funny River boat launch

The Alaska Department of Natural Resources is working to secure funding for… Continue reading

.
COVID-19 cases remain high in area

Every region of Alaska was considered to be at “intermediate” or “high”… Continue reading

Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion 
The entrance to Soldotna Public Library is seen on Thursday, March 25, 2021 in Soldotna, Alaska.
Soldotna library seeks to beef up reading programs

The Soldotna Public Library will use a $2,200 donation from the Soldotna… Continue reading

Characters from the "Little Mermaid" wave to the crowd from the Triumvirate Theatre float during the Soldotna Progress Days parade on Saturday, July 24, 2021, in Soldotna, Alaska. (Camille Botello / Peninsula Clarion)
Progress on parade

The Progress Days Parade was held Saturday in Soldotna.… Continue reading

Most Read