GARDINER — Teachers in Regional School Unit 11 will receive raises in both years of their new contract.

The agreement between RSU 11 and the Gardiner Teachers Association covers 2012-13 and 2013-14, and it includes a simplification of rules for sick time accrual and a permanent reduction in the number of reimbursable credits for continuing education.

The most significant, change, however, involved compensation. For 2012-13, all 118 members received a 1.75 percent raise; step increases that teachers typically receive for reaching longevity milestones or earning new credentials were not included in the 2012-13 pay arrangements. The raise cost the district $147,597.

For 2013-14, the steps were restructured, and the pay increases that teachers receive will depend on where they fall on the scale. Total salaries in the district will rise by 2.35 percent over 2012-13, which will add $201,515 to the budget that the school board is drafting.

The increase is likely to be about 1 percent of the 2013-14 budget.

Superintendent Pat Hopkins said she’s pleased the school board and teachers union were able to reach an agreement after a lengthy and sometimes difficult negotiation process.

Association President Dean Hall, a teacher at Gardiner Regional Middle School, said that when the first round of negotiations was not successful, the parties went to mediation, which also failed. The negotiators later returned to the table on their own.

Hall said the contract was rejected by only a couple of the approximately 80 union members who voted on it last month.

“It keeps people moving forward, though certainly not at the level that we would like,” he said. “There’ll be an expectation that full steps will be included in the next contract.”

The RSU 11 school board approved the contract by a vote of 8-2, with Andy Grover, of West Gardiner, and Tyler Trott, of Randolph, voting against.

Susan McMillan — 621-5645
[email protected]

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