School Committee, Teachers Union, Agree On Contract
Teachers will vote to ratify new agreement.
Two months after snubbing the Tewksbury Teacher's Association by voting down the contract its negotiators had agreed upon with the teachers, the Tewksbury School Committee on Wednesday unanimously supported a new teachers contract that was finalized in a bargaining session last Thursday.
The new, one-year contract, which will expire on Aug. 31, gives the teachers no raises whatsoever in the current school year. Since the teachers have been working without a contract for six months, the one-year deal will expire in six months.
"We're happy to finally get this done," said school committee member Dennis Francis, who served on the board's negotiating team. "Both sides worked together and the teacher's stepped up and took a zero percent raise for this year."
Four early release professional development days were added to the teachers' contract, and an additional, top level pay grade was added. The school committee also agreed to increase the tution reimbursement fund for teachers from $35,000 to $45,000.
The shool committee agreed in executive session to accept the agreement, and the teacher's union has yet to vote on the new agreement. But final ratification should be no more than a formality at this point, according to Francis.
"I think it's a great first step for the schools, the teachers and the town," Francis said.