What we know from the information provided in the press release is that in Year 1, the contract "includes" an increase to the base salaries of 1.75% and in Year 2 a smaller increase to the base salaries of 1.5%. We also know that there will be an "increased contribution from teachers for family insurance." The press release goes on to explain that a Compensation Review Committee will be formed that will spend the next two years reviewing the teachers’ salary schedule (sometimes referred to as the STEP ladder), continuing education, health insurance, professional development, retirement and other forms of compensation.
We were a bit surprised with the brevity of the information provided on the actual terms of the new contract recalling that when the 3 year 2011-2014 HCHTA was approved, the community was provided much more detail. So we dug into Board Docs and confirmed that last time around there was in fact, more transparency in the flow of information. Below is the text of the Joint Press Release that was issued on October 24, 2011.
Text of October 24, 2011 Press Release:
"Joint Release from the Board of Education and HCHTA on Approval of Negotiated Contract
Following the approval of the 2011-2014 contract, the contract went to print after final language clean up and the final printed version was approved on January 23, 2012. (Click to open Final Version of 2011-2014 HCHTA Contract.) At that time, the BOE also provided the community with a detailed analysis of what the financial implications of the contract were. (Click to open Financial Analysis of the 2011-2014 HCHTA Contract.)
Comparing the information we have received on the new 2 year contract with what we were given last time, we are left with the following questions:
1. Why wasn't more detailed information on the terms of the new contract provided to the community on 5/29/14 just as it was on 10/24/2011?
2. Are there any STEP increases in the 2 year contract?
3. Will teachers continue to be compensated for 13 hours of professional development? Will they be compensated for more or less hours? What will their compensation rate be for professional development hours?
4. Will there be any changes to the retirement incentive pay, which currently is 6% compounded salary increase for up to 4 years for eligible staff?
5. What is the increased contribution from teachers for family insurance?
6. Are teachers possibly losing overall compensation over the 2 years when the increased insurance contribution is subtracted from their base increase?
7. What is the average year-over-year increase for each teacher? In 2011-2012 it was 0%, in 2012-2013 it was 2.2% (Range of 0.41% to 4.76%) and in 2013-2014 it was 4.3% (Range of 1.57% to 5.79%).
8. What is the total year-over-year cost for on-schedule staff only? In 2011-2012 it was $0 (0%), in 2012-2013 it was $691,936 (2.9%) and in 2013-2014 it was $1,008,635 (4.1%).
9. What is the net year-over-year cost for all staff? In 2011-2012 it was -$31,363 (-0.1%), in 2012-2013 it was -$651,658 (-2.5%) and in 2013-2014 it was $597,696 (2.3%).
Until the community is provided answers to all these questions, we will not really know what the financial implications are for EITHER the teachers OR the D181 taxpayers. We will not know if the 2 year contract is FAIR and EQUITABLE for either the teachers or the D181 taxpayers.
Until we know what percentage salary increase the BOE approved for the Administrators, we will not know if the Administrators have also been asked to participate in the "new economic reality" or the "new educational reality." We will not know if they are more greatly valued by the BOE than the teachers who are the front line soldiers. Moreover, will a review of the Administrators' salaries be part of the work to be performed by the new Compensation Review Committee? It would hardly seem fair to D181's hard working teachers and taxpayers if the Administrators are not subject to the same review process going forward.
We, therefore, urge the Board of Education OR the HCHTA to release the financial data that answers these basic questions to the D181 tax payers immediately. And we urge the BOE to immediately release the Administrator Salaries it approved on May 29.