Superintendent of Schools Colleen Palmer just sent this message to Westport families:
- At midnight tonight the current contract extension of Dattco with its drivers expires, and the drivers have the option of striking without penalty tomorrow.
- With urging from the District and Dattco, the federal mediator working with this labor issue reached out to the drivers’ union to ask the union leadership to encourage its members to come to work tomorrow. We have been informed that this did occur and that the union leadership is not promoting a strike.
- Negotiations are set to continue next Monday, May 1.
- We will not know the status of the drivers who plan to work tomorrow until shortly after 6 a.m. when they begin to report for work.
- All schools will be open, no matter how many drivers come to work. Schools have sent out specific information to their respective families today and will be ready to receive students upon arrival starting 15 minutes earlier than usual.
- CHANGE OF PLAN FOR BEFORE AND AFTER SCHOOL PROGRAMS – the District will operate all before and after school programs tomorrow as normally scheduled.
Thank you to all of our families for your creativity and resourcefulness in making contingency plans for tomorrow. I will remain optimistic that the message from the federal mediator has a positive impact on continuity of service, but we have all of our plans in place in the event that we do not have a significant percentage of the driver workforce show up for work tomorrow.
Since there are no negotiations now set for this evening, my next communication to you will be approximately 6:30 a.m. tomorrow morning to update you on the status of our transportation plan for the day.
Superintendent of Schools
Meanwhile, Post Road drivers were surprised to see more than the usual number of buses turning into Dattco’s parking lot opposite Playhouse Square this afternoon.