After two weeks of closed-door negotiations, the all-Island school committee voted Thursday to approve a memorandum of agreement with the Martha’s Vineyard Educators Association, inking staff contracts for a 10-day period at the start of the school year.

The vote marked a step forward in the school’s re-opening plan, which officially passed on Thursday after receiving approval from the Oak Bluffs school committee — the last of the districts to vote — earlier that afternoon.

But as the schools have forged ahead in past weeks, teachers have expressed reservations. Many have raised concerns at recent school committee meetings over aspects of the re-opening plan, including lack of access to their classroom spaces and a general lack of communication between school administrators and faculty.

For weeks, union leadership, teachers and members of MVEA have been working with the all-Island negotiations subcommittee to temporarily modify terms of their current contract — effective through the end of August 2022 — to better fit to the unusual circumstances of a pandemic-altered school year, superintendent schools Matthew D’Andrea said Thursday.

Subcommittee co-chairman Kate DeVane explained that according to the public school’s collective bargaining agreement with MVEA, the schools are legally required to try to reach an agreement with the union when teacher working conditions change drastically.

The document proposed to the committee dictates terms for a 10-day period before the official start of school — Sept. 2 through Sept. 16 — devoted entirely to professional development and teacher training.

The memorandum addresses specific areas of concern, such as Covid-related sick leave, training teachers on building safety precautions and remote learning platforms and ensuring HVAC systems meet recommendations set by the health and safety committee.

On Thursday, already two days into the prescribed training period, the school committee brought the memorandum to a vote. The document was ratified by MVEA members earlier in the week, Mr. D’Andrea said.

In presenting the agreement, Ms. DeVane was careful to emphasize item 20 of the document, which stipulates that the memorandum not be used as a precedent for any subsequent agreements.

“This is the agreement for the first 10 days and it does not bear any weight on what we do next,” she said. Negotiations on a separate memorandum for the remainder of the school year will hopefully begin soon, said Ms. DeVane.

Just before the vote, subcommittee co-chairman Michael Watts, who supported the document in the subcommittee meeting, voiced concerns about the use of the word “safe” when describing air circulation in item 4.

“It is a subjective term but it means something,” said Mr. Watts. “When people keep talking about the health and wellness committee, it’s not about safety. It’s about decreasing risk. And the word safe there I think leads people to believe something other than what it is.”

Taking Mr. Watts comments in stride, the committee voted to approve the current terms of the memorandum, passing the motion 8-3. Committee members Lisa Regan, Kris O’Brien and Mr. Watts voted nay.

With formal support for the school reopening plan from all Island districts, the committee next turned its focus to details of the upcoming months.

Dr. Jeffrey Zack, physician and medical advisor on school reopening, came before the committee to present updates on a comprehensive testing program for the school, backed by the committee last week.

To move forward with the proposal, the schools will have to commit to raising $150,000 for the program and mandate testing for all students and staff entering the building, said Dr. Zack. Without full participation, the program will not work, he said.

The committee will hear further details on the proposal, and possibly bring the question to a vote, at a meeting next week.

In related business, the committee heard updates from school business administrator Mark Friedman on Covid-related expenses incurred so far in the school’s shared services line. Mr. Friedman reported a variety of expenses, including $19,000 to renew the school’s Zoom license when it expires in February and $12,000 to improve the HVAC system at the superintendent’s office.

Mr. Friedman also requested approval from the committee to enter into a 60-month lease for a school postage meter at a price of about $2,100 a year. The committee voted unanimously in favor of the request.

In the final piece of reopening business Thursday, the committee unanimously backed a revised 2020-2021 school calendar that calls for three days of teacher-only professional development at the close of the school year. The calendar will be released to the school community in the coming days, Mr. D’Andrea said.