School board OKs deal on teacher compensation
School board members voted 3-2 Tuesday to approve a three-year agreement between School District 51 and teacher representation group Mesa Valley Education Association.
The “nay” votes for the agreement, which lays out compensation, benefits, and employment stipulations for District 51 teachers, came from board members Jeff Leany and Ann Tisue. Both said they were concerned that the agreement is for three years instead of one. Mesa Valley Education Association President Jim Smyth said the contents of the agreement are negotiated on a yearly basis.
Leany added he does not approve of the agreement reinstating “lanes” for teachers, which are incremental pay raises associated with the level of higher education a teacher obtains. Leany said research indicates teacher performance does not correlate with those teachers earning higher degrees.
“I got in this business for dealing with kids and doing the best by them. Granting these lanes I think is not the best move,” he said.
Lanes were temporarily disbanded during recent years’ budget cuts. “Steps” in pay for years of experience teaching in the district were reinstated last year after a three-year freeze.
A proposed budget for 2013-14 presented at Tuesday’s board meeting predicts the district will experience a net increase of $3.351 million in revenue next school year. That figure subtracts $616,000 the district’s demographer anticipates the district will lose in state revenue due to a predicted drop in 160 students this fall compared 2012-13 enrollment.