Negotiations Updated and Tentative Agreement Reached – November 30, 2017

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Initial Summary of the 2017-2018 Tentative Contract Agreement Between the PBCSD and PBCCTA

The PBCSD and the PBCCTA reached a tentative agreement last night, regarding compensation/raises for our bargaining unit.  Below is a basic summary of the agreement.  A more detailed analysis of the overall contract agreement for the 2017-2018 school year will be drafted and sent out to members in the coming days. Please stay tuned for more information as it becomes available.

Last night, the following agreements are made regarding compensation/raises for the 2017-2018 school year:

1. We will no longer be awarded “flat raises” for highly effective and effective evaluation levels.  In the past few years (and in the PBCSD initial offer this year) all teachers, regardless of time of service, received the exact same raise for each evaluation level (highly effective, effective, etc.)  This places zero value on teacher experience and time served as an employee of the PBCSD.  It also has contributed to salary compression over the past few years due to the fact that regardless of years of service, a 30 year teacher and a 3 year teacher would receive identical raises if they were rated the same on their evaluation. This year our agreement turns away from flat raises and returns to the more fair and equitable true percentage raises that have existed in our profession for decades.  As a result of the tentative agreement reached last night, all highly effective and effective teachers will receive the following true percentage raises (retroactive to August of 2017) upon ratification of the agreement.

– Highly Effective 2016-2017 evaluations will be awarded a total 3.50% raise to their current salary (includes a 0.50% COLA).

– Effective 2016-2017 evaluations will be awarded a total 2.75% raise to their current salary (this includes a 0.50% COLA).

– All teachers rated below effective in 2016-2017 and all new teachers hired in the 2017-2018 school year will receive only a 0.50% COLA.

To calculate your potential raise, simply locate your current salary in PeopleSoft, by way of your compensation history,and multiple it by your respective raise percentage.  If ratified, a lump-sum retroactive portion of your raise for the 2017-2018 school year will be paid out to all employees, followed by a real-time salary adjustment moving forward in each of your future paychecks.

2.  HB 7069 passed last summer by the state legislature had language expanding the Best and Brightest Scholarship Bonus Program to award all teachers in the state of Florida a $1200 one-time bonus if they were rated Highly Effective in 2016-2017 and an up-to $800 one-time bonus for those rated Effective in 2016-2017.  The specific language of the statute did not include educators working in schools, who are part of our collective bargaining unit, that are not classified as “classroom teachers”.  As a result, over 1,300 individuals in our bargaining unit (mostly media specialists, guidance counselors, school psychologists, etc.) would not receive this state funded bonus, in spite of the fact that they do also receive evaluations just like classroom teachers.  In a show of good faith, the PBCSD and PBCCTA saw fit to ensure these 1,300 individuals are similarly compensated with a bonus based on their evaluations.

3.  Starting in the 2018-2019 school year all sport/club/activities sponsors will see a 5% increase annually over the course of two years to their supplemental pay.  This will result in an overall 10% increase over current supplement pay levels.

4.  The issue of “salary compression” on the pay-scale for many who are stuck in the middle was put forth by the PBCCTA during negotiations.  The PBCSD rejected addressing the issue in language due to what they described as uncertain fiscal conditions moving forward.  The PBCSD did however offer up a plan to potentially address the much needed revenue increase that would be required to truly address salary compression.  This plan includes asking the taxpayers in November of 2018 (when the re-authorization of the .25 millage for fine arts) for an additional .25 millage increase, exclusively to be earmarked for raises to address salary compression and recruitment and retention issues.  The plan has not been spelled out in great detail yet, but more information will be forthcoming.  Additionally, a committee will now be constituted per new contract language to analyze other means of cutting costs in the district or increasing revenues to address the salary compression issue.  This is not what we had hoped for, as we had wished for efforts to be made for the current school year to begin addressing salary compression.  However, it is a series of tangible steps towards addressing the issue as early as November of 2018 at the ballot box.

Overall, most teachers in the PBCSD will receive raises demonstrably higher than anyone would have anticipated for the current school year.  The combination of going back to true percentage raises, increased funds allocated towards raises by the conclusion of negotiations, and zero increases healthcare costs for the 2017-2018 school year will in fact place the educators in the PBCSD near, or at the very top of real compensation gains across the state of Florida.

More detailed analysis of the overall agreement will be emailed out to members in the coming week.  Is it enough?…not nearly.  The Superintendent stated as much last night, our school board members have repeated this fact for years, and the PBCCTA obviously agrees.  But this is a massive step in the right direction and the district is clearly aware now that teachers have waited long enough, will no longer accept substandard raises and talk without action regarding salary compression, and are ready and willing to take all measures to ensure the negative trends of the past cease, moving forward.

As a result of the tentative agreement that was reached last night…THERE IS NO CALL-TO-ACTION NECESSARY FOR THE DECEMBER 13,2017 SCHOOL BOARD MEETING.  I will be in attendance to speak to the contract agreement.  All are welcome to do the same and express your personal opinions, as well.

Sincerely,

Justin Katz
CTA President

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