Communicating at Impasse:

Communicating During School Labor Negotiations and Strikes

Workshop Description:

The greatest test of your communication system and the greatest challenge to your reputation as a school system can come during labor unrest and difficult contract negotiations. When we reach impasse at the bargaining table, the conflict often boils out into the public with heightened media coverage, employee demonstrations, and negative publicity. Tom DeLapp has become a recognized national expert in dealing with labor negotiations communications. He has served a communications advisor and public spokesperson for six school districts during teacher strikes and has assisted dozens of other districts communicate during impasse, mediation and fact-finding situations. This workshop is designed for cabinet level leaders, management team administrators, and school boards.

Topics covered include –

  • Understand the mechanics of collective bargaining from a communicator’s viewpoint
  • Setting the tone and defining the messages
  • Creating a clearinghouse of comparative data, trends and positions
  • Keeping principals and managers from being caught in the middle
  • Strike preparations; what to expect
  • Media relations techniques during collective bargaining
  • Keeping parents on the lines but in the loop
  • Being proactive (just enough)
  • Do’s and Don’ts as the clock ticks down
  • The aftermath and the healing process

What you do during this stalemate sets the framework for relationships in the next round of talks