Santee teachers’ new two-year agreement after union negotiations

2
203
Avitar.jpg

Santee teachers are getting raises of four percent this year dating to July 1, 2015, and another four percent starting July 1 of this year following ratification of a new contract by the Santee Board of Education at its Feb. 16 meeting.

The new contract was hammered out Jan. 25 in a 13-hour mediation session between representatives from the Santee Teachers Association and the District. The parties agreed to mediation in January following a break down in negotiations over the terms of the new contract last October.

Santee teachers are getting raises of four percent this year dating to July 1, 2015, and another four percent starting July 1 of this year following ratification of a new contract by the Santee Board of Education at its Feb. 16 meeting.

The new contract was hammered out Jan. 25 in a 13-hour mediation session between representatives from the Santee Teachers Association and the District. The parties agreed to mediation in January following a break down in negotiations over the terms of the new contract last October.

The district, which encompasses nine schools and has about 300 teachers, had offered the teachers a total increase of 5.65 percent spread over three years, but was also changing other aspects of the prior agreement, including reducing the amount of sick days allotted to new teachers.

“The issue was not always about the money for teachers,” said Lori Meaux, president of the STA. “They wanted to increase our work days, and were adding meetings, and taking away sick days from new teachers, and taxing retiree benefits.”

In addition to the pay increase, the contract calls for raising the health benefits cap by $1,800 over two years instead of boosting that cap over a three year period as previously offered by the district.

That benefits cap will increase by $600 effective July 1, and increase by an additional $1,200 starting July 1, 2017, according to the tentative agreement.

The new agreement will boost the salary for a mid-range teacher in the district from about $65,560 to nearly $71,000 by the second year.

The district will have to shell out an additional $1.1 million annually to pay for the changes to the new contract, according to a district report.

Meaux said the teachers were able to leverage a good deal of community support for their cause, helping them to gain a better deal overall than the one offered last year. “I feel like we worked together and compromised but we came out victorious, getting some things for our teachers.”

Barbara Ryan, president of the Santee Board of Education, the governing body for the district, said, “We greatly appreciate out teachers, and are very pleased that an agreement was reached.”

2 COMMENTS

Comments are closed.