First Posted: 1/20/2009
Attorney Charles Coslett’s letter of resignation as Lake-Lehman School Board chief negotiator in teacher contract talks cites "increasingly indirect" communication with the revamped negotiation committee and "the significant divergence of opinion" as reasons for his decision.
In the letter, Coslett writes that "It is now to the point that I am only consulted as an afterthought," and an "erosion of my ability to provide continuing legal advice regarding said collective bargaining."
Coslett’s letter offers no details, but the board restructured the negotiation committee in December with the biggest change being the addition of Board Member Walter Glogowski, a former teacher and long-time teacher union activist. Glogowski has expressed opposition to some actions taken by the committee prior to his appointment onto it.
Glogowski’s appointment to the negotiation committee coincided closely with the last teacher strike, which began Dec. 22 and lasted to Jan. 5. Because the strike ran through the scheduled Christmas break, students only missed two days of school. State law would have allowed the strike to continue to Jan 13, but teachers returned to work after a negotiation session they claimed was productive. Coslett did not attend those negotiations and declined to give a reason why.
Teachers made a new offer during another round of talks on Jan. 13, and both sides were planning to schedule more meetings the first week of February. The teacher contract expired in August 2006.