Friday, Aug 01, 2014
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District approves teachers contract

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BROOKSVILLE - After months of negotiations, the school district and teachers union have agreed on a contract.

On Tuesday night, the Hernando County School Board ratified a $3.5 million contract with the Hernando Classroom Teachers' Association for the 2013-2014 school year.

The new contract includes a new system for paying teachers that paves the way for teacher performance pay required when the 2014-2015 year begins

The single salary schedule starts at $36,810 and goes up to a maximum of $84,510. The pay schedules include percentages added for advanced degrees and positions with critical shortages, according to an agenda summary of the changes in the agreement.

The agreement also extends the workday by one hour for instruction employees at Eastside Elementary School and Fox Chapel Middle School, as part of the district's turnaround plan.

The agreement also puts a temporary hold on teachers in "core" academic areas from transferring to new positions through the end of the school year, to not disrupt testing

Last month, the union and district reached a tentative teacher agreement, that included an average increase of about $1,750 for Hernando County Teacher's Association members, as well as step increases to be paid retroactively on the first day of the 2013-2014 contract.

"No one will receive less money, and no one receives a pay cut," HCTA President Jo Ann Hartge previously told Hernando Today. "Teachers currently receiving longevity pay will continue to receive it."

According to the contract, teachers who are not receiving longevity pay by June 2014 will no longer be eligible for it.

Performance pay also means automatic raises are going away for Hernando County teachers in the coming year, according to district officials. Earlier this school year, about $1.8 million in step-increases were paid out to teacher's association members.

Starting this coming year, teachers will be evaluated and paid based on standardized test performances of their students. Previously, about half of a teachers' effectiveness was based off of school administrators' evaluations.

wbiddlecombe@hernandotoday.com

(352) 544-5283

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