January 22, 1990
Mr. David W. Hanneman
Central Wisconsin UniServ
2805 Emery Drive
P.O. Box 1606
Wausau, WI 54401
Mr. William Bracken
Director, Employee Relations
Wisconsin Association of
School Boards, Inc.
P.O. Box 160
Winneconne, WI 54986
Re: Tomorrow River School District
Case 14 No. 42835 MA-5817
In accordance with the parties' request at the January 10 hearing in this
matter, the following constitutes the expedited Award. As agreed at the hearing,
the discussion which follows will be kept to a minimum.
There is evidence that in the past management has, as the Union argues, given
broad application to the clause requiring that courses eligible for credit be in the
teacher's "subject area". If the collective bargaining agreement reasonably allowed
so broad an application on its face, this would tend to indicate a past practice
justifying continuation of such credit in the instances grieved here. But I do not
find the practice controlling, because I do not find the collective bargaining
The contract states at page 13, line 5: "In order to remain on the salary
schedule horizontally and vertically, a teacher must earn four (4) credits in his
subject area (graduate or undergraduate not necessarily in a masters program) every
five years. Contracts shall be adjusted on or about September 1 for additional
credits affecting the placement on the salary schedule . . ."
The reference to placement on the salary schedule clearly refers to the
teaching salary schedule and not the extracurricular schedule, which does not
provide for such credits. Accordingly, courses not related to a teacher's regular
teaching (i.e. that paid for on the teaching salary schedule) are not in the teacher's "subject
area" as defined in this clause. Neither of the grievants
herein is paid for coaching on the regular salary schedule. And the evidence showed
that the content of the workshop applied for is clearly aimed primarily at coaching;
any value for a coach's other duties is just a bonus.
While Schultz's athletic director duties present the closer of the two cases,
because he gets some time during the day for the administrative part of that work,
it is still stretching the language of the clause to describe athletics as part of
his subject area, because athletic director duties are plainly compensated as part
of the extracurricular schedule and not on the teaching schedule. In addition, I
note that the term "subject area" as used by the District is a common usage
throughout the teaching field, while the Union's use of the phrase is so broad as
to include virtually anything which could arguably help a teacher teach better --
a broad category indeed.
I therefore conclude that regardless of whether the District may have agreed
to credit such courses in the past, the express language of the Agreement is plainly
not violated by refusal to do so now.
For these reasons, it is my decision and
1. That the Agreement was not violated by the District's refusal to approve
the mental skills training workshop for salary schedule credit for the grievants
Schweitzer and Schultz.
2. That the grievances are denied.
Very truly yours,