Medina Journal-Register — The Albion Board of Education approved the district’s contract with its teacher’s union Monday, a move that includes an annual salary increase and an evaluation tool that is a requirement for education aid funding.
The new contract, which covers the 2012-13, 2013-14, 2014-15 and 2015-16 school years, was OKd after an executive session. The Albion Teachers Association still has to sign off on the compact.
”It benefits both sides,” Superintendent Michael Bonnewell said. “We now have the process for creating a teacher evaluation system.”
That piece has to be in place by January 2013 for schools to receive their share of New York’s $700 million in Race to the Top funds.
According to Bonnewell, the contract increases teacher’s salary’s by an average of 3.4 percent each years but increases their contribution for health insurance from 10 percent of costs to 15 percent.
The deal also reduces the maximum limit for post-retirement health insurance that can be received in exchange for unused sick days to 12 years. It was previously 16 years.
”It will slow the growth of our future liability,” Bonnewell said.
Assistant Superintendent for Business Sean Liddle told board members Monday that the district’s estimated liability for those benefits will rise to $10.88 million next year.
Albion has traditionally set aside 2/3 of the estimated cost for non-pension retirement benefits, which board members described as a prudent measure. The board approved adding more than $250,000 to the fund Monday.
”This allows these costs to not affect our annual budget,” Liddle said.
The teacher compact comes just after Albion placed highly in a ranking of teacher pay levels compiled by Buffalo Business First. Their rankings analyzed pay levels at the fifth-25th, 50th, 75th and 95th percentiles in each district, using data from the New York State Education Department.
According to the rankings, Albion placed 18th out of 98 districts in Orleans, Niagara, Genesee, Erie, Wyoming, Allegany, Chautaqua and Cattaraugus counties.