After a rally that saw hundreds of Brick Township teachers and their supporters show up at the school district’s administrative offices Friday night, word came down that a memorandum of understanding was signed following a marathon negotiating session.
The Brick Township Education Association’s leadership engaged in state-run mediation with the administration and school board for the first time in over 35 years after failing to settle a contract through local discussions. The first mediation date was Friday, and consisted of negotiating teams sitting in separate rooms while a state-licensed mediator swapped offers back and forth. All involved arrived to see hundreds lined up at the Veterans Complex off Van Zile Road to support the teachers, with staff members sharing photos and videos via social media to help drum up support.
Sources within the district said the two sides remained at the bargaining able until about 4:15 a.m., when they finally reached an agreement. The details are unknown, as the contract terms must be ratified by both the union members as well as the full Board of Education before the contract is considered finalized.
Superintendent Gerard Dalton did not respond to a request for comment. BTEA President Tim Puglisi acknowledged an agreement had been reached but said he was contractually prohibited from providing any details as to its content.
The next meeting of the Board of Education is scheduled for March 14. If the union’s membership votes in favor of moving the agreement forward before that date, it is likely that the board will have an opportunity to vote on it then. The meeting will be held at the Professional Development Center, adjacent to the central office, at 7 p.m.