Rutland, VT — Rutland educators seeking fair contracts have been impeded twice from making comments in meetings with the Rutland School Board in the last couple weeks. Before the most recent meeting, the district’s hired law firm stated in an email that “comments related to contracts or negotiations are outside the scope of what can be discussed.”

“We are disappointed and frustrated that, yet again, the board chairman doesn’t want to hear from the very people who have worked to keep in-person learning available during a global pandemic,” said Sue Tanen, a sixth-grade teacher at Rutland Intermediate School who serves as REA president.

“Whether the board wants to hear us or not, we will remain committed to obtaining a contract that is fair to us, good for our community, and, most importantly, good for our students,” she said. “We will not rest in our dedication to our students, our city, and each other.”

Despite the Board’s recent actions, Dena Goldberg, Chair of the Rutland City Public School Staff Relation Committee stated that they have all intentions of continuing towards a settlement. “We are currently in the fact finding process so we have to wait for the report to come out.”

Goldberg emphasized that negotiations are ongoing and have not been stopped or discontinued. “The report should come out soon and once it is released, it can assist us in where we need to go and both sides can continue the process that we mutually agreed upon.”