Chapter 9

The 1999 election was viewed as the key to a more generous contract settlement by many teachers. The union gave lots of money to the candidates they supported and were confident that they would be as successful as they had been two years earlier when their candidates swept the election.

This summer one of the casualties of the 1997 election sweep, a former school board member who had reputation for tight fistedness, ran into a teacher from his daughter's old school as he stopped by the post office. This teacher has served on and continues to serve on the teacher's negotiation committee. Although the conversation was outwardly friendly the teacher couldn't help but twist the knife into this "stingy" exboard member.

The teacher told the tight fisted board member that after the election, "Its going to be Christmas in January." In other words, by sweeping this second election, the teachers expected the new school board taking office in January to offer them a great contract settlement.

Once again, changing the school board does not change the money available to pay teachers. Duluth will only be able to offer its teachers more by cutting programs and reducing the payroll.