Labor Relations

Wednesday, September 6, 2017 (All day) to Thursday, September 7, 2017 (All day)

Cornhusker Marriott - Lincoln

*Pre-registration is now closed. Please visit the on-site registration desk to register.

Whether you're a novice at the bargaining table or an experienced negotiator, this conference will provide the latest information in the labor relations arena.  This conference is presented annually, each September.

Wednesday, September 6th
12:30     Registration Open

1:00       Pre-Conference Workshop: Negotiations 101, 201 and Beyond!
Perry, Guthery, Haase & Gessford, P.C., L.L.O.
In this session, Rex Schultze, Jim Gessford and the Perry Law Firm will get you up to speed on the “in’s and out’s” of negotiations and Nebraska collective bargaining statutes.  From salary schedule placement to determining your array, all school personnel need to be knowledgeable about the negotiating process from “A to Z.”

4:30       Beer and Wine Tasting Social
Join us after the Pre-Conference for a beer and wine tasting social with local breweries and vineyards.  Grab a snack and spend some time networking with your colleagues all while trying out the wonderful local beverages Nebraska has to offer.

Thursday, September 7th
7:00     Registration Open

8:15     Welcome and Opening General Session: State and Federal Law Update: Did You Check Twitter This Morning?
KSB School Law
Labor law in the Trump era has been at times surprising, and at times kinda boring.  We promise we'll pick out the exciting stuff!  For the most part.  When policy is changed with every tweet as much as each new court case, there's plenty to discuss.  The attorneys from KSB will cover the most recent labor law developments you should be aware of this year.

9:45     Concurrent Session I

10:45   Concurrent Session II

11:30    Luncheon

12:00    Keynote: Teamwork in Tough Situations
Mike Henke
Hear what can help prevent a large divide from forming before labor negotiations take place, and also how to create synergy between your administration and school board to have a unified message and accomplish more while making everyone's life easier!

1:15     Concurrent Session III

2:15     Concurrent Session IV

3:00     Adjourn


Snaptress, Pingram, and Instachat... Oh My: Employment due process and just cause in a social media world – Arbor 1
Eric Weber, NASPA and Lincoln Public Schools
Due process and just cause are critical elements to understand and establish in any workplace investigation or employee disciplinary situation. Real-time lightning fast social media and covert communication apps complicate cases and investigations. This session will take a broad look at due process and just cause as it relates to school employees, and the complexities that emerge when social media is involved. We will also explore proven progressive discipline processes to keep you out of due process trouble.

Preparing to Be Prepared for Negotiations: The Practical Steps We Wish You'd Take – Arbor 2
Bobby Truhe and Shari Russell, KSB School Law
You know the buzzwords and most of the basics: "comparability," "prevalence," and "mandatory subjects of bargaining."  However, knowledge of the laws does very little to help you in negotiations if you haven't taken the steps to know your board's range of possible negotiating positions.  These are based on facts you can gather and understand far in advance of your first negotiations session.  This presentation will cover the practical things you should do to prepare for negotiations and make sure you don't have to switch positions late in the game if negotiations aren't successful, from the perspective of a school lawyer who reviews your negotiated agreements and a paralegal who puts together your comp studies and prevalence analysis.

Special Education/Legal Update – Hawthorn
Greg Perry & Jeanette Stull, Perry Law Firm 
Come learn what's new in special education law. After a long silence, the Supreme Court spoke out this summer on special education issues in a pair of significant decisions. Learn how these decisions affect the special education services you provide in your district each day. And if you find yourself in the midst of litigation, learn how these cases will affect the process and outcome.

Using Effective Communications to Survive Labor RelationsOlive Branch
Annette Eyman, Nebraska School Public Relations Association
Are you enduring a labor relations issue? Use effective communications to survive! Do you know how to communicate your message to your target audience(s)? Do you have a plan to get in front of a crisis? This presentation will walk participants step-by-step through developing messages for a variety of issues, figuring out who your audiences is and how to best communicate with them, no matter what the issue at hand is. This presentation will cover ideas on how to communicate your message and survive…no win the PR battle in any crisis situation. Participants will leave this session with an in-depth knowledge of how to develop a message and frame your message to win your audience.

HR 101 – You Really Did That?Arbor 1
Renee Hyde and Kati Settles, NASPA and Papillion La Vista Community Schools
Administrators and Board Members will get a practical overview of things that can trip you up and cost your district big bucks.  Plus, we will offer simple ideas for staying out of hot water so you can keep the focus on learning and students.

Torts and Labor Law: How Training and Preparation Help You Avoid Getting Sued – Arbor 2
KSB School Law
School lawyers constantly worry about tort liability in schools, and there have been several cases in Nebraska where those issues relate directly to preparation, training, and policies established by the board and administration. From cotton shirt fires in welding class to accidents in small engines class, there's a lot boards, administrators, and school staff members can do to prevent ending up in the newspaper...or in one of our presentations some day.

Classified Staff Issues – Hawthorn
Josh Schauer and Justin Knight, Perry Law Firm
Having a positive relationship with your classified staff is important.  In this session, the Perry Law Firm will discuss legal issues involving classified staff members, including common mistakes that involve handling classified staff members..

A Fist Full of Retirement Dollars – What school board members should know about the School Employees Retirement Plan (NPERS School Plan) – Olive Branch
Orron Hill, Nebraska Public Employees Retirement System 
In this presentation, the NPERS Director and Legal Counsel will explain the provisions of the School Plan and the benefits it provides to school districts, ESUs, and school employees.  We will cover the highlights of the plan, discuss some challenges and complexities, and advise how you can help protect this excellent benefit.

Lessons From a Real Life Hearing – What Can we Learn (DOUBLE SESSION) – Arbor 1&2
Kelley Baker & Justin Knight, Perry Law Firm
Lindsey Burback and Dustin Nielsen, Emerson-Hubbard Public Schools
This session will walk through what happened in a recent teacher cancellation hearing.  Participants will include the attorneys and school administrators involved in the case.

The Ins and Outs of RIFs – Hawthorn
Josh Schauer, Perry Law Firm
The RIF process is full of technicalities and, in the last year, a number of RIFs have gone to hearing.  In this session, attorneys from the Perry Law Firm will discuss RIF considerations, requirements, and strategies.

School Finance: A Better UnderstandingOlive Branch
Bryce Wilson and Jen Utemark, Nebraska Department of Education
From basic State Aid concepts and projections to the use of school district funds and budgeting. This session will address a variety of issues related to school finance.

2:15 – 3:00
Lessons From a Real Life Hearing – What Can we Learn (DOUBLE SESSION) – Arbor 1&2
Kelley Baker & Justin Knight, Perry Law Firm
Lindsey Burback and Dustin Nielsen, Emerson-Hubbard Public Schools
This session will walk through what happened in a recent teacher cancellation hearing.  Participants will include the attorneys and school administrators involved in the case.

Negotiations – Timing and Data are Everything! – Hawthorn
Craig Caples, Jesse Sierks, and Matt Dunning – Nebraska Association of School Boards
This session will outline and simplify the negotiation process.  It will provide an overview of the statutory requirements and necessary steps of the comparability process, demonstrate how to gain an advantage in the negotiation process, utilize various tools to ensure your district is following the applicable Industrial Relations Act requirements, instantly create and access data reports, and view real-time placement calculations. Come see how your district can save time using these simple tools to effortlessly streamline your negotiations.

Educator Health Alliance Update – Olive Branch
Gregory Long - Educators Health Alliance
Kent Treford-Thompson – Blue Cross Blue Shield of Nebraska
Kent Treford-Thompson and Greg Long will discuss the latest updates to the Affordable Care Act, the Value of the EHA, and provide an EHA Board update.


Guest Rooms
Cornhusker Marriott
Rate: $105 + taxes
Mention: NCSA/NASB Labor Relations 2017

Any cancellation request must be received no later than Friday, September 1, 2017.

*A 48 hour (2 business day) cancellation policy is in place for all events. To avoid being charged the full registration fee, please submit any requests to cancel your registration before the cancellation deadline. Please contact Michelle,, with all cancellation requests and inquiries. Please note: your registration fee will be refunded or waived ONLY if an event is cancelled due to inclement weather. Otherwise, the 48 hour (2 business day) cancellation policy remains in effect for all events.


Upcoming Events

NCSA/NDE School Safety and Security Summit

October 17, 2018
Kearney Holiday Inn

A statewide event to provide meaningful education from local and national experts on prevention, preparedness, and response protocol.  Look for registration and more information in August.

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