Tentative contract reached with GPPSS teachers

By: K. Michelle Moran | Grosse Pointe Times | Published August 22, 2023


GROSSE POINTES — After sessions with a mediator Aug. 15 and 16, it appears that the Grosse Pointe Public School System has come to a tentative agreement with its teachers on a new contract.

In a joint statement issued by email Aug. 17, the district and the teacher’s union — the Grosse Pointe Education Association, which is affiliated with the Michigan Education Association, or MEA, and the National Education Association, or NEA — announced that they had “entered into a tentative agreement for a successor collective bargaining agreement for the 2023-24 school year.”

Both sides “have agreed to keep the terms of the tentative agreement confidential until the Union’s bargaining members have ratified the agreement,” the statement continued.

The lack of a contract has been a point of contention in the district, which has been hemorrhaging teachers and administrators in recent months as contract talks dragged on and educators left for more lucrative positions in districts that they deemed more stable and supportive. As of early August, about 32 teachers had left to accept teaching jobs elsewhere. The district has been contending with reduced revenues and budget cutbacks.

Dozens of teachers and supporters appeared before the Grosse Pointe Board of Education during a July 25 meeting at Brownell Middle School in Grosse Pointe Farms to express their alarm and frustration over the contract impasse.

In early August, Taryn Loughlin, co-president of the Grosse Pointe Education Association, said the teacher’s union was “still continuing to bargain until we get something that’s fair and reflects the values of the Grosse Pointe school district.”

The current contract expired Aug. 15. It wasn’t known at press time when the union was voting on the tentative contract.

According to the GPPSS, teachers are slated to report to work Aug. 29. The first day of school for students will be Sept. 5.

“The parties look forward to continuing their work and commitment to providing our students the best possible educational opportunities,” the joint statement reads.