Tuesday's cold, drizzly weather did not deter about 90 Red Bank Regional faculty members from gathering outside the school before classes began as "a sign of unity" as contract negotiations with the board near the two-year mark, according to RBR Education Association President Mary Karlo.
"We are gathering more often as a sign of unity and to remind all that RBREA has been committed to providing an excellent educational opportunity to all despite the lack of a contract," Karlo wrote in an e-mail Tuesday morning.
Both sides are waiting on a non-binding fact-finder report based on testimony given during a formal hearing in December. The previous contract with the board expired on June 30, 2011.
If no settlement is agreed upon following the fact finder's report, both sides would then move into super conciliation, with more negotiating, recommendations and ultimately, time until a new agreement is ratified for the approximately 150 teachers and office personnel employed by the board and represented by the association.
While negotiations are under way, the terms and conditions of the expired agreement remain in effect, including salary and health benefits.