Guam - With the newly-elected Guam Education Board in place, the Guam Federation of Teachers is anxious to get collective bargaining negotiations underway. During Wednesday's board meeting, GFT president Tim Fedenko expressed concerns that the support staff contract, which expired in 2009, has been sitting on the school board's desk for many years.

GFT representative Franklin Perez presented the board with documentation from June 1982, which he says recognizes the GFT as the bargaining unit for support staff. In addition, fedenko says without a teacher contract in place, teachers who are sick on Mondays and Fridays must present doctors excuses to their principals.

He said, "If someone is sick on a Monday or Friday and a principal wants to ask for a doctor's excuse that only takes money out of the teacher's pocket. That doesn't help the teachers it makes the doctors richer 0846 having mandatory meetings teachers working during their lunch periods these are things that are violations of law, it only costs the department money when they could be spending resources 0858 for the students."

The board went into executive session to further discuss the future of negotiations. The Education Board has been seeking clarity on whether the GFT is, in fact, the sole bargaining unit for teachers and support staff.