Strike notice filed at Mathews

VIENNA – Custodians, food service workers and bus drivers in the Mathews School District filed a notice of their intent to strike on March 14.

Members of the district’s Ohio Association of Public School Employees Local 611 filed a 10-day strike notice Monday, forewarning of their absence after rejecting the board of education’s “last, best and final” offer on their collective bargaining agreement.

Among the contract’s sticking points are the number of personal days allowed to each employee, severance pay, summer work rates and base salary increase.

“Throughout the negotiation process, the Mathews Board of Education has bargained in good faith with OAPSE Local 611. Given the current economic situation, the board believes their last, best and final proposal is a fair offer, which serves the best interest of our community, our students, and all of our employees,” Superintendent Lew Lowery said in a news release.

Lowery said the school will continue to function and notice will be given to parents on how to prepare their children for school in light of the possible absences.

The union’s current agreement expired June 2013, with negotiations on a new agreement beginning the month prior. By September, the unresolved issues were turned over to mediation and in December the board of education gave its final offer.

Contact information for union representatives was not available.