Contract approves pay raises

Published 6:45 am Tuesday, April 18, 2006

By Staff
NILES - Niles Community Schools teachers will see a pay raise over the next two years.
A new three-year Teacher Master Agreement was ratified Monday night at the regular meeting of the school board that will increase teacher salaries during the 2006/2007 and 2007/2008 school years, Superintendent Doug Law said.
According to the agreement, teachers will receive a 1.5 percent raise next year and a 2.25 percent raise the following year.
The contract also includes an additional increase for teachers who earn 45 credit hours past their master's degree. A pay raise for the 2008/2009 school year is up for negotiation.
The agreement also limits what the Board will pay for insurance increases to 8 percent in 2006/07 and 10 percent in 2007/08.
Part of the contract also adds 16 minutes to the school day. Classes will start four minutes earlier and end 12 minutes later.
The agreement also states the school year will start after Labor Day and will end on the Thursday after Memorial, which, in 2007 will be on May 31.
Law said the parties used a collaborative bargaining model without the help of professional negotiators. Preparation for negotiations began informally over a year ago and collaborative negotiations began in February.
It was also announced at the meeting Monday night, the process of developing a new bond proposal may begin as soon as this fall.
Law said the school board plans to once again contract with Marketing Partners to survey those who voted in the February bond election.
Marketing Partners performed a marketing survey in preparation for the first bond campaign.
The company is planning on doing focus group discussions and perhaps a written survey.
Law said the district is hopeful in getting local foundations to help pay for the survey.
Once the results of the survey are gathered, Law said the process of developing a new bond proposal will begin this fall. Law said the board does not anticipate holding an election on a new bond proposal until sometime in 2007.