School district finalizes agreement with classified employees

The Philomath School Board during its Jan. 12 meeting unanimously approved a memorandum of agreement between the district and classified union employees.

The move finalized negotiation agreements with Philomath’s chapter of the Oregon School Employees Association that included a 1.5% cost-of-living salary adjustment and an insurance cap contribution increase.

The MOU also outlines changes in working conditions specific to the 2020-21 academic year that are in place as part of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

School Superintendent Susan Halliday described the MOU as straightforward, adding that employees emphasized making sure there was adequate personal protective equipment.

“One of the things that was in agreement we could — with their knowledge — assign folks to a different location or a different responsibility as might be needed,” Halliday said, adding that such moves would be temporary and related to pandemic-related needs.

Workplace child care had been a topic of discussion during negotiations but the final MOU included language that doesn’t require that service.

The union ratified the two-year agreement just before winter break, Halliday reported.

The board adopted the MOU on a 5-0 vote.