An arbitrator last week issued recommendations aimed at resolving the impasse in contract negotiations between the Carroll County Board of Education and the teachers union.
In reviewing the recommendations, however, both the school board and the Carroll County Education Association, which represents about 1,300 teachers, have agreed not todiscuss the issues publicly.
Previous school contract talks in Carroll County have been open.
"We're going to try and work through them before we put them out there for the public," said William H. Hyde, Carroll's assistant superintendent for administration. "We have some things to out."
HaroldFox, CCEA's chief negotiator, said he will meet with the association's leadership this week to discuss the arbitrator's recommendations. Both sides met with the arbitrator for several hours Thursday.
"There was a lot of discussion over what has happened," Fox said. "Thereis no settlement as of yet. Talks are progressing, but there's no resolution."
CCEA and the board declared an impasse in May after failing to agree on several issues, including proposals for a smoke-freeworkplace and sick-leave banks and working conditions. Both sides began meeting with an arbitrator shortly thereafter and came close to reaching tentative agreement in June until the board approved raises for beginning teachers.
Like other school workers, teachers had agreed to forgo pay raises for the 1991-1992 school year. The board, however, increased first-year teacher salaries from $22,414 to $23,370, and second-year teachers' pay from $23,311 to $24,000.
Calling theraises "outrageous," CCEA maintained the issue of pay increases for beginning teachers should have been brought to the bargaining table.
Under the existing contract with the CCEA, the school board maintains it has the right to set -- without negotiation -- beginning teachers' salaries.
The salary increases remain an outstanding issue for both sides. Both CCEA and board officials have said they are committed to resolving differences. Another meeting has not yet been scheduled with an arbitrator.
"We're hopeful that the issues will be resolved," Hyde said.
The board has formed committees to study association proposals for less costly insurance coverage and the formation of a sick-leave bank, which would allow workers to donate a sick day a year to a bank for use by workers who have exhausted their own sickleave time. The insurance committee began meeting last week.
The teachers' contracts expired June 30. The board has not extended the one-year contract. In addition, any contract improvements, such as improved insurance coverage, increment and longevity pay, and higher tuition reimbursement, have been put on hold until a new agreement is reached.
The board will decide whether contract improvements will beretroactive after ratification takes place.
The smoke-free workplace proposal will not take effect until teachers and the board reach a tentative contract. Initially, the board proposed implementing the policy, which would ban smoking in all school facilities, Sept. 1.
Until a contract is reached with teachers, workers will be asked to comply voluntarily with the policy, Hyde said.
The board has reached contracts with three associations, representing administrators andsupervisors, food service and custodial workers.
The association representing clerical and secretarial workers has reached a tentativeagreement, and the contract is awaiting ratification by workers.