There's a new buzz Wednesday in the Durand School District, in large part, because of the Winnebago School district.
"We were really happy that they passed their contract, it really gave us hope, inspiration that we'd be able to do the same," Durand's Education Association Karen Flanagan said.
Right down the hall, the man on the other side of the bargaining table, Durand superintendent Greg Stott, agrees. The two sides have met ten times since April with a federal mediator, but so far, no Durand deal has gotten done.
"The union is trying to get what they want. The school board is trying to get what they want, the school board is trying to give as much, so hopefully it will get done soon. Sometimes you'd wish it gets done a little sooner," Stott said.
As usual, cash and coverage are the main roadblocks. And even though it's November, Durand's 40 some teachers aren't panicking just yet.
"I don't really think there's cause for concern at this point because we are on both sides still negotiating and working together and the teachers really want to end this process," Flanagan said.
Both sides are scheduled to meet again Tuesday. They're using Winnebago schools as motivation, that yes, two sides can get along and find some common ground, for the common good of the district, and the kids.
"Not taking it personal is the key. Sometimes you say something, things get heated, but you have to find ways to come back, and again talk," Stott said.
A district coming to terms with their teacher, their neighboring district hoping to follow suit soon.
Teachers in the Byron District are also working under an expired contract. However, a district spokesperson expects both sides to agree on a new deal soon. They just need to iron out a few contract details.