The Galesburg Education Association Thursday evening lashed out at the administration now that the two week old teachers strike has ended. In a release to the media, the GEA says while the four year contract was ratified by a slim margin, the union expressed what it calls its frustration and disappointment. The GEA says while many provisions of the new contract are acceptable to the majority of the membership, it called the nature of the return to work agreement punitive and vindictive and beyond insulting. Due to parameters available for a vote in these circumstances, the union says it couldn't legally separate the contract and the return to work agreement into individual votes. The union goes on to say the board and administration have financially crippled retirees claiming the amount of salary lost in this upcoming year, combined with the lost amount of salary compounded in the remaining years before retirement is what it calls, outrageous. The GEA says it accepted the contract by the slimmest of margins to address the needs of the students despite the sacrifices, the union says, the teachers made. Classes begin Friday.
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