A long-running teachers’ strike in Crosby-Ironton, Minn., ended last week after teachers agreed to some reductions in retirees’ family health benefits.
The 1,300-student district and Education Minnesota Crosby-Ironton, the local union, settled on a two-year contract that calls for a trust fund to pay health-insurance costs for up to nine years after a teacher retires. But teachers with less seniority will get a more limited retirement benefit, and new teachers will get no family care in retirement—a change from the current arrangement. (“Minn. Teachers Take Strike Into 7th Week,” March 30, 2005.)
The district will raise its maximum contribution toward the cost of family health coverage for teachers now working.
As a result of the strike, which began Feb. 9, the school year will be lengthened by two days, and eight extra days will be added over the next two years. Administrators eventually managed to hold classes in most grades using substitute teachers, whose credentials and pay were challenged in court by the union.
The strike was Minnesota’s longest teacher walkout in 20 years.