The on-again, off-again strike threat is finally over for the Lakota schools, and officials say the long-term contract with Petermann remains intact.
The district released a question-and-answer section on its website yesterday, anticipating queries parents might have while the bus drivers contract was still in limbo. One of the questions was whether the district would stay with the company after what superintendent Matt Miller described in a video message as a “debacle.”
“Lakota Schools has a multi-year contract with Petermann,” the answer reads. “We are always evaluating what is in the best interest of our students. Any additional costs incurred to settle negotiations will not be passed on to Lakota. The contract between Lakota and Petermann sets annual caps on expenditure increases.”
Another question addressed whether any changes to the contract or possible cuts in service are possible.
“We are not considering any changes to transportation at this time,” was the answer.
The district has said repeatedly it has no involvement in the negotiations between Petermann and its drivers. The Journal-News has reached out to the company to get some answers about the contract dispute.
Some people commenting on the Journal-News Facebook page were on both sides of the fence about the negotiations.
“Yeah let’s punish the children, many who have no way to school. It teaches them the important lesson don’t like something throw a hissy fit and put Innocent kids are risk to get your way,” one person wrote. “This should have been handed in a much better way. Sorry and I have friends that are Lakota transportation staff.”
Someone else replied, “Their not throwing a hissy fit, their fighting to make a living wage. Sorry if trying to feed their families inconvenienced you.”
This story will be updated as more information becomes available.
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