Volusia County Schools declares impasse with VUE Support

VUE President Elizabeth Albert says impasse was an 'unnecessary and very disappointing step.'

Photo courtesy of Volusia County Schools
Photo courtesy of Volusia County Schools
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After a third failed bargaining session over salary negotiations, Volusia County Schools declared an impasse with Volusia United Educators Support, a district press release announced Friday, Sept. 15.

The district presented VUE with a proposal that included a 2% average salary increase and longevity compensation beginning with employees that have worked for VCS for five years or longer. VUE, in turn, proposed a 3% salary increase and compensation for both retention and longevity. 

"This recurring expense is not sustainable and would have significant and material long term effects for all Volusia County Schools stakeholders," the district press release states.

In a Facebook live video, VUE President Elizabeth Albert said the union believes the declaration of impasse was an "unnecessary and very disappointing step."

"We've been here before," Albert said in the video. "We will now shift gears and we will work with [the Florida Education Association] to develop our response to impasse."

A declaration of impasse doesn't mean VUE and VCS cannot continue to talk. The district's press release, however, states that it expedites the timeline, citing that a delay would negatively impact all support employees.

"The district’s bargaining team is committed to finding a solution that is the most equitable for our employees," the district stated.

Albert said schools cannot run without support professionals. 

"In the VUE family, our support professionals are just as important as everybody else and I need everyone to understand our commitment that we have to ensuring that paraprofessionals and office specialists in Volusia County Schools are recognized for every bit of the value they bring to the equation," she said.


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