Ann Arbor teachers ratify new contract without pay raise
The Ann Arbor teachers' union ratified a new two-year contract with the school district, union President Brit Satchwell said this afternoon.
Union members voted Wednesday and Thursday.
Preliminary counts show 800 union members voted yes, Satchwell said. The union has 1,200 members total. Satchwell didn't know Friday afternoon how many teachers voted against it or how many total teachers voted.
The contract is the first in district's history to not include a pay raise. However, many teachers will still be paid more this year than last year due to step increases tied to education and years of service.
The contract covers the 2009-10 school year and the 2010-11 school year. It did not set a pay rate for next school year, largely because the district's finances are still unsettled. The district and union will have to return to negotiations to set those raises.
The district doesn't know how much per-pupil funding it will get from the state this year - nor does it know if county voters will approve a 2-mill tax in November that would bring $11 million a year to the school for the next five years.
The contract still has to be ratified by the school board, which could vote as early as Wednesday night.
In addition to teachers' pay, the 80-page contract sets the school calendar for this school year and next and details other changes for teachers.
Prescription drug co-pays will be going up. But the amount of money the district contributes for teachers' health care also will go up. Teachers can choose how they want to spend that money. If they opt for the most-expensive plan offered, they'll have to pay part of the cost. If they choose the lower-priced HMO, they'll get money back from the district.
David Jesse covers K-12 education for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at 734-623-2534 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.