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posted: 8/23/2012 2:05 PM

Dist. 301 comes to terms on teacher contract

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The teachers union and board of education in Central Unit District 301 have reached an agreement on a two-year contract that reinstates pay raises for eligible teachers. The current contract expires Aug. 31.

A joint news release from the school board and the Central Education Association, which represents 235 teachers, said the two sides after months of bargaining agreed to keep base salaries unchanged for the 2012-2013 and 2013-2014 school years and reduce retirement benefits.

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Superintendent Todd Stirn said teachers, however, will receive a pay raise where appropriate.

"Under the new contract teachers will be allowed step movement on the salary schedule for a year of experience and lane movement if they pursue continued education opportunities for additional endorsements or approved graduate degree programs," Stirn said in an email to the Daily Herald.

While the first year salary for a teacher remains at $37,100, a teacher in the second year will receive $38,325, including retirement benefits. A more seasoned teacher's increase will vary depending on years of service and additional degrees or credits, Stirn said.

Stirn added that the new contract will cost the district an additional $397,000 in the first year, which includes payments to the Teacher Retirement System. In the second year of the contract, the increased cost to the district will be about $399,000. The second year includes retirement payments and increases for teachers' years of service.

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