From classroom trends to school board decisions, Class Act will keep you updated on all the school issues followed by the Star Tribune’s education reporters. Contributors include Alejandra Matos, who covers Minneapolis; Kim McGuire, who covers the west metro; Erin Adler, who covers the south metro; Anthony Lonetree and Libor Jany, who cover St. Paul and the east metro, and Shannon Prather, who cover the north metro.

Union leaders urge ratification of St. Paul teachers contract

Posted by: Anthony Lonetree Updated: February 24, 2014 - 11:28 AM

The executive board of the St. Paul Federation of Teachers has recommended that union members approve a new two-year contract negotiated with the school district last week.

Details of the agreement are to be released at a news conference set for 3 p.m. Monday.

The board's vote came Sunday night, in advance of a membership meeting set for 4:30 p.m. Monday, according to a tweet by union president Mary Cathryn Ricker.

She could not be reached to comment.

Two weeks ago, the executive board had raised the stakes on the current round of bargaining by setting a strike authorization vote for Feb. 24.

The school district then held a news conference warning of potential strike impacts and the union organized a rally outside school district headquarters last Tuesday during which parents and students joined scores of teachers in backing the federation's contract goals.

On Friday morning, after a mediation session that lasted nearly 24 hours, the two sides announced they had reached a tentative deal. The agreement, which is to run through the 2014-15 school year, is expected to include provisions relating to class sizes, standardized student testing and early learning, as well as wages and benefits.

The two sides began negotiations nine months ago.

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