2017-09-21 / Local News

New contract for Leland teachers

By Amy Hubbell
Of The Enterprise staff

A new contract has been inked with the Leland Education Association (LEA).

During a special meeting held earlier this month, the School Board unanimously approved a two-year agreement with the LEA.

“We’re very happy with what we have in place,” board president Bill Robinson said. “We came to an agreement working in a spirit of cooperations with the shared goal: to support and attract great teachers and staff.”

During this school year teachers were provided a 1 percent salary increase for changes in steps based on years of service. In addition, teachers with 12 or more years at the district will receive a 1 percent increase for longevity.

To illustrate, the salary for a first-year teacher with a bachelor’s degree is set at $38,034. A first-year teacher with a bachelor’s degree plus 18 credits toward a master’s degree is paid $39,555 per the contract.

Compensation continues to increase with each year of service and additional post-graduate work. Teachers with 12 or more years of service also receive “longevity pay.” Based on this, compensation for a teacher with a master’s degree and more than 21 years experience is now $72,918.

Another 1 percent increase across the board will be provided during the 2018-19 school year.

The news was tempered by concerns expressed by a member of another worker organization with whom the district is negotiating.

School bus driver Dave Noble spoke during the second public comment portion of the monthly meeting with complaints about the amount drivers are paid for “wait time” or time spent waiting for an event to conclude to begin the second leg of the trip home.

“I’ve worked over 100 hours of wait time since the first of January,” Noble said, who calculated wages based on time worked including waiting for events to end. “The $8.60 an hour we’re paid isn’t even minimum wage.”

In response, superintendent Jason Stowe offered no comment other than to say Leland’s School Board and administration are in the process of negotiating a contract with the Leland support staff. Included are bus drivers, food service employees, aides and clerical staff.

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