Board Approves Contract With Teachers

The Topeka Public Schools’ Board of Education tonight approved the 2011-2012 Professional Agreement with NEA-Topeka. The vote by the board was unanimous and comes just days after teachers approved the contract. Seventy-one percent of voting teachers approved it.

The contract calls for a salary increase of $750 in the current school year. It increases the number of allowable instructional days up to but not to exceed 184 days. It also includes a memorandum of understanding that the school district will design and develop a compensation plan aimed to recognize and reward performance which is considered above and beyond normal job expectations for certified employees.

The professional agreement is from August 1, 2011 through July 31, 2012.

Quote from Patrick Woods, Board of Education President

"The approval of this negotiated agreement reflects the fact that improving the working conditions of our front-line educators remains a high priority for this board. After all, Teacher Working Conditions are really Student Learning Conditions. I know the Administration and the Teachers' Association worked extremely hard putting together an agreement that is fair and equitable to teachers, invests our limited resources wisely, and most importantly improves learning conditions for our students by extending instructional time, among other measures. As a board member and a parent, I appreciate all of their work at the bargaining table and what they do for our students.”

Quote from Jeremy Gibson, NEA-T President

“The Professional Agreement between Topeka Public Schools and NEA-Topeka continues to build on the partnership we have established in serving our students and staff. By working together, Topeka teachers have a voice in creating solutions. For example, we agreed to a collaboration time where mutually agreed to topics will be addressed. In addition, we worked together to decrease health insurance premiums while maintaining current benefits through the Wellness Program. NEA-Topeka is pleased to see the value the Board has for the teachers in Topeka Public Schools.

Quote from Keith Newbury, NEA-T IBB Member

The NEA-T IBB team is happy for the ratification of the contract. It speaks highly of the relationship of the entire IBB team, as well as Interest Based Bargaining itself, that a mutually beneficial contract agreement was reached in what could fairly be described as difficult times. We look forward to continuing to build on this contract, the process, and the relationship between both teams to ensure improved conditions to allow the district to recruit and retain the best possible teachers to educate our children.

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