ORANGE — Athletic directors and administrators of the Orange Unified School District met Thursday to discuss the 50% reduction in coaching stipends, and a second meeting is scheduled for today, Orange High School Athletic Director Dave Zirkle said.
The two sides have been at odds since Aug. 12, when the Orange Unified Education Assn. voted to approve a collective bargaining agreement that included a reduction in all district stipends for extra-curricular activities.
"We kicked things around for about two hours," Zirkle said. "We, the district and (the teachers) are trying to find a way to return the stipends to normal."
Thursday's meeting included athletic directors, or their representatives, and principals from the district's four high schools--Canyon, El Modena, Orange and Villa Park. Also present were union officials and the district's chief negotiator.
Among the options discussed was reopening negotiations on collective bargaining, but Zirkle said district and union officials were against that idea.
Zirkle said any plan worked out at these meetings would be taken to the coaches, who have scheduled a meeting for 5 p.m. Sunday at Hart Park in Orange.
"What it comes down to is a vote by the coaches," Zirkle said. "We (the athletic directors) are only representing them. Unless they vote 100% to accept what they have in front of them, then they will have to vote on what to do."
Zirkle said one of those options could be a boycott of fall sports.