By Dalton Karwacki
The board of education for the Princeton Regional Schools unanimously approved a new three-year contract with district teachers last night that includes a salary increase of 2.78 percent the second year and 2.5 percent the third year. The contract is retroactive to July 1, 2011 and runs until June 30, 2014.
For the first year of the contract, teachers will remain at their current pay steps except for longevity, and will also receive a cash payout based on education, starting at $1,250 dollars, according to Superintendent Judith Wilson.
The second year salary increase of 2.78 percent accounts for higher employee health care contributions mandated by the state, School Board President Rebecca Cox said. The increase of 2.5 percent the third year will be offset by the phasing out the district’s two most expensive health care plans, which will cease to be offered after June 2014, she said.
Extra pay teachers receive for additional services such as coaching sports and advising clubs will remain the same for the first year and will increase two percent in the second and third years of the contract.
Wilson took a moment to thank people for their patience during the long negotiation and ratification process.
“This process is never easy, even when it’s short,” she said. “This was extended, 14 months, and it did bring a lot of angst and anxiety to many, many people. It was trying, but we’re ready to move forward.”