Oakcrest High School finally opened today, a week after Absegami and Cedar Creek high schools. The multiple delays in the opening of Oakcrest were due to poor administrative planning, according to Stephanie Tarr, president of the 435-member Greater Egg Harbor Regional Education Association. “With all of the construction, there is no way the opening of school should have been moved to before Labor Day,” she said.
Oakcrest parents dropping off their students were met by an informational “practice” picket line that highlighted the ongoing bargaining crisis in the district. The picketing included a flyer detailing the history of the bargaining crisis and the fact that staff is beginning their second year without a new contract.
Staff picketed from 6 a.m. until 7:05 a.m., arriving in classrooms and on job sites before the start of their contractual day.
On August 30, Greater Egg Harbor Regional Education Association members picketed outside Absegami and Cedar Creek high schools.
In May, the GEHREA’s negotiating team accepted a state-appointed fact-finder’s report. The Board’s negotiating team rejected the report. As a result, a state-appointed super conciliator has been assigned.
There is still no date set for the district and association’s bargaining teams to meet. The association has not been contacted by the board to set up any negotiating sessions, but the association stands willing to meet at any time to resolve the crisis. In the meantime, the association is waiting for the super conciliator to set a date to call both sides to meet.