Perham teachers, board reach settlement
Perham faculty and the school board both voted Dec. 19 to approve a teacher salary and benefits contract for 2007-2009. The settlement was reached right before the Christmas break, meaning a more relaxed holiday for both parties. Education Minnes...
Perham faculty and the school board both voted Dec. 19 to approve a teacher salary and benefits contract for 2007-2009.
The settlement was reached right before the Christmas break, meaning a more relaxed holiday for both parties.
Education Minnesota-Perham, the teachers' bargaining unit, voted to ratify the contract Wednesday afternoon, Dec. 19. The Perham-Dent School Board voted unanimously to approve the contract at the regular school board meeting that evening.
In total salary and benefits, including health insurance premiums and extracurricular salaries, the teachers will receive a 4.06 percent increase for the current 2007-2008 contract year. The 2008-2009 increase will be 2.67 percent.
In terms of the teachers' actual take home pay, the settlement included salary schedule increases of 1.25 percent the first year, and 1.96 percent the second year.
The settlement follows nearly a dozen meetings and one session with a state-appointed mediator. Board members and teacher representatives described the agreement as amicable, and it was reached comfortably ahead of the state's Jan. 15 deadline.
"The (teachers) negotiations team would like to thank the board team for their hard work and effort," stated Dave Knudsen, who negotiated the contract with fellow teachers Lance Rach and Kyle Knutson. "We especially appreciated the ability to work together in a professional, respectful manner."
Teachers rejected an initial settlement on Oct. 30 by a 61-35 vote. That vote prompted what is believed to be the first time Perham teachers and board negotiators have ever gone into mediation. But it was only one session with the state mediator, which shortly thereafter produced a settlement acceptable to both sides.
Negotiating for the school board were Ron Berns, Dave Schornack and Jim Rieber.
The Wadena-Deer Creek school district also settled last week, at a 2 percent and 2.5 percent increase in salary and benefit compensation over two years.