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Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Newton teachers protest lack of contract

NEWTON

In a sign of increasing frustration that contract negotiations have spilled into the school year, more than 200 Newton public school teachers descended on this week's School Committee meeting to demand a settlement. '

To get to their meeting room at the Walnut Street education center Monday night, School Committee members had to walk a gauntlet of somber, silent teachers holding green and yellow signs saying: "Fair Contract for Newton Educators." Teachers have been working without a contract since the last agreement expired on Aug. 31.

Cheryl Turgel, president of the Newton Teachers Association, said negotiations are currently stalled on two issues: pay increases
and the amount of time teachers are allotted for parental conferences.

School Committee Chairwoman Dori Zaleznik said she believes both sides are "trying to bargain to the best of our ability."

-- Ralph Ranalli

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