School superintendents learn about labor relations

School superintendents learn about labor relations

MARQUETTE — Superintendents and other school officials from throughout the U.P. were meeting in Marquette today.

The Michigan Association of School Administrators has ten regions across the state. Region 1 comprises the entire Upper Peninsula. Members from across the region got together for a labor relations seminar.

“This is really a refresher course for some of us, and for some folks, it’s new material,” MASA Region 1 president Tim Hall said. “(There’s a) lot of good information to make sure that when we go into negotiations, that we understand the legalities of what we can and can’t do in there.”

Hall is the Sault Ste. Marie school superintendent. He says some of the aspects of school employees’ jobs that can be determined by collective bargaining are changing, including teacher placement.

“Seniority isn’t a big factor anymore in where districts can assign teachers or in terms of layoffs and recall,” Hall said. “That’s an area that districts want to work with unions on. We want to make sure that we’re doing the best thing we can for the staff and the teachers and the district and the students.”

The Michigan Association of School Boards sponsored the seminar and hosted it by video conference.