St. Louis teachers ratified an agreement with the school district Monday Aug. 27, creating a new salary schedule that will bring more frequent raises for teachers with the most seniority.
The vote was 41-2 in favor of ratification.
The school board tentatively approved the agreement on Monday, Aug. 20. It goes into affect with the new school year and (when coupled with an already approved “step” increase) will result in an average pay increase of 3 percent for teachers.
The old salary schedule contained gaps between steps 12, 16, 20 and 24. The new salary schedule allows for steps 13-15, 17-19 and 21-23.
Step increases are not automatically granted each year. “Every year salary and benefits are discussed and bargained, unless there is a multi-year collective bargaining agreement,” said Superintendent Kristi Teall via email. “We have a three-year contract, and are beginning year two of that contract. We have a re-opener to bargain salary and benefits in year two and three of the contract.”
“All teachers will be placed on the new 30 step scale beginning with the 18-19 school year,” Teall said.
The school board also approved a 3 percent raise for 10 non-union employees.
Transportation supervisor to retire
It was announced Aug. 20 that Transportation Supervisor Ernie Teall will retire sometime before Oct. 1, 2019. To begin the process of replacing him, the board approved the hiring of Cliff Gamber, currently a mechanic with the district, as transportation supervisor beginning Jan. 1, 2019. Gamber is expected to do both jobs (mechanic and transportation supervisor) for the time being. Ernie Teall will then continue as maintenance supervisor until his retirement.
Additions and subtractions
The board accepted the resignations of elementary social worker Glenn Thelen, Title I teacher Angie Adams, fifth grade teacher Guy White and the retirement of fourth grade teacher Renee Fabiano. White has taken a job in his hometown. Thelen had a part-time job in St. Louis and took a full-time job in Alma Schools. Adams took a job with the Saginaw Area Intermediate School District.
“It wasn’t that they were unhappy (in St. Louis),” Teall said.
Elementary teacher Stacy Hirschman was granted a leave of absence.
The board approved the hiring of Kristen Long as high school health and physical education teacher (replacing Scott Neumeyer), Andrew Snoblen as high school math teacher (replacing Sam Morey), Marcia Schick as a third grade teacher (replacing Stacey Hirschman), Jessica Lucchesi as a fourth grade teacher (replacing Renée Fabiano), Brittany Cleary as assistant varsity cross country coach and Jason Luneak as high school boys basketball coach.
Finally, Meghan Phelps is replacing Jessica Cole as the district’s Spanish teacher. However, Phelps doesn’t have a teacher certificate yet, so the district will use her as a “long-term sub” during the 2018-19 school year. At that point, Phelps should be able to get a teaching certificate from Saginaw Valley State University, Teall said. Then the district can hire her as a full time teacher.
Board President Jeff Baxter was absent. Don Kelley, Greg Walterhouse, Carrie Beeson, Carrie Salladay, John Pavlik and Kelly Bebow were present.