After more than three years of working without a new contract, the Phoenixville Area School District and its teachers union (The Phoenixville Area Education Association (“PAEA”) ) have ratified a new contract. It is retroactive to July 1, 2010 and will expire on June 30 next year.
The deal became official Monday night when the School Board voted unanimously to approve the contract, which had been approved by the teachers union members during a meeting on Sunday night.
The two sides had reached a tentative agreement back in early August. No details of the pact were released at that time, pending ratification by both sides. That has now happened and the school district issued a press release Monday evening with the specifics of the deal.
Under the contract as announced by the district:
- Teachers, who have not had a raise since 2009, will get a one time bonus of $2,000 and a one percent pay raise over what they earned in June 2009.
- Eligible teachers will also move one step up on the salary ladder over where they were in 2009
- Teachers will (for the most part) pay more for their health insurance premiums.
- Class schedules will be more flexible with the removal of the contracted "bell schedule"
The school district issued a press release with full details of the deal on Monday night. Here is the full press release:
Earlier this evening, by a vote of 9-0, the Phoenixville Area School District Board of School Directors (“Board”) ratified the tentative collective bargaining agreement reached between the District and the Phoenixville Area Education Association (“PAEA”). The PAEA membership ratified the tentative agreement on September 22.
The new collective bargaining agreement, which is effective from July 1, 2010 through June 30, 2014, includes several noteworthy changes, including the removal of the bell schedule from the contract. This is a significant development, as the District will now possess the flexibility it needs to create a true secondary campus, align curricular and co-curricular offerings more effectively, and continue to provide an enhanced and innovative educational experience for our students.
Under the terms of the new contract, there were no salary increases, step movement or track changes for the first three years of the agreement. Association members received one-time bonuses totaling $2,000, and a one percent (1%) increase to the total 2009 payroll was added to the 2013-14 salary scale. In addition, eligible Bargaining Unit Members will move one step on the salary scale for the 2013-14 school year and track changes will now resume.
Effective upon ratification of the agreement, the health plan changes from a Blue Cross PC 20 plan to a Blue Cross PC 20/30/70 plan. Under the new contract, Bargaining Unit Members will pay seven percent (7%) of their total medical costs (hospitalization, major medical, prescription, vision and dental) and not the flat monthly rate of $45.00 that they had previously paid. In addition, the prescription plan has been changed to a three-tiered plan and the use of generic medications and mail order prescriptions is mandatory when available.
As evidenced by the ratification of this agreement, combined with the recent settlement of a new five year contract with union that represents the District’s secretaries, custodial and maintenance staff, and the finalization earlier this year of the Act 93 Compensation Plan for the District’s administrators, the District has made great strides in maintaining labor peace while holding down cost for the taxpayers. At this time, only the union representing the aides and technology staff continues to operate under an expired contract, and negotiations between that union and the District are ongoing.
School Board President Josh Gould stated: “This was a particularly difficult negotiation due to the economic environment and the District's need for greater flexibility in light of looming federal and state mandates. I would like to thank both teams of negotiators for their many hours of work that have resulted in this mutually beneficial agreement. I would also like to thank the PAEA membership for their professionalism throughout the protracted negotiation process."
For additional information about the terms of the new agreement, as well as a complete copy of the contract, please refer to the PowerPoint that has been posted on the District website.