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Bethlehem Byte

School board approves three-year agreement with Guilderland Teachers

Press release from Guilderland Central School District on Friday, June 22:

At a special meeting held June 21, the Guilderland Central School District Board of Education ratified a three-year contract with the Guilderland Teachers’ Association (GTA), concluding a bargaining process that began in December 2010.

Members of the GTA voted on June 20 to ratify the agreement, which covers the period of July 1, 2011 through June 30, 2014, by a margin of nearly three-to-one. The contract calls for salary schedule improvements of 2.4% in 2011-12, 1.5% in 2012-13, and 1.4% in 2013-14. Salaries for teachers during the 2011-12 school year will range from $45,200 for first year staff to $74,131 for those with at least 23 years of experience.

“Considering the current economic climate, we are thankful and pleased that both parties could come to an agreement that not only meets the needs of our committed staff but that is also fair to our taxpayers, as well,” said Board of Education President Colleen O’Connell.

The negotiated agreement calls for no change in the salary schedule from 2010-11 to 2011-12, making it a “step-only” year. In addition, the contract also includes a delayed step salary increase for the 2012-13 and 2013-14 school years. GTA members eligible for advancement on the salary schedule will do so on February 1, 2013 and February 1, 2014—an agreement that will save the district approximately $420,000 per year.

Other changes in the contract include clarified language and updates on the use of personal leave, tuition reimbursement, evaluation for teacher leaders and coaches, and the development of the district’s Annual Professional Performance Review Plan and related appeals process. The contract also includes the transition of the high school English teacher schedule from a four course to a five course workload beginning July 1, 2013. This change in schedule will result in a savings of $280,000 for the district in 2013-14.

“We are so appreciative of the work that went into approving this contract,” said Superintendent of Schools Dr. Marie Wiles. “Our teachers are the cornerstone of the district, and their willingness to work with district leaders to settle on a contract that includes concessions only proves their commitment to the children and families of the Guilderland Central School District.”

The Guilderland Teachers Association is comprised of 481 district staff members.

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