A school board negotiations team and the teachers union in the Kennebunk-area district have reached a tentative contract agreement after stalled negotiations earlier this month prompted teachers to stop performing voluntary work.

The Regional School Unit 21 School Board Negotiation Team announced in a news release Thursday that a tentative agreement has been reached with the Kennebunk, Arundel and Kennebunkport Educators’ Association. The agreement includes all outstanding issues presented by both sides during the negotiation process.

“We’re hopeful and excited to highlight the collaborative work we’ve accomplished during this challenging year,” the release said. “The RSU21 negotiation team feels this tentative agreement reflects a fair and balanced approach and supports students, teachers and the taxpayers of Arundel, Kennebunk and Kennebunkport.”

The union, which represents more than 170 teachers and staff across the district, voted in late May to institute work to rule, under which employees strictly adhere to performing only required work and stop doing voluntary extra work. They also organized a “Red for Ed” march through downtown Kennebunk to show solidarity.

The school board said at the time there were several concerns they were trying to work through including disparate pay raises for teachers in the current contract and rising costs of health insurance.

“The KAKEA and RSU 21 School Board have reached a tentative agreement that we believe is in the best interest of all who are covered in our collective bargaining unit,” said Jenessa Cadorette, president of the union, in an email. “We are no longer working to rule and will be sharing the updates with our membership on Monday afternoon. An official vote will take place then as well.”


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