Glen Rock School Board Signs New Contract with Teachers

Three-year deal includes an average salary increase of 2.36 percent but with givebacks in health insurance contributions.

In what could be the quietest, most amicable teacher contract brokered in New Jersey since the start era of the 'New Normal' era, the Glen Rock Board of Education and Glen Rock Education Association (GREA) has formalized a new three-year deal both sides are calling a victory for the community.

The school board voted 8-0 with one abstention Monday night on agreeing to the new contract, which covers the 2012-2013, 2013-14 and 2014-2015 school years.

Teachers and support staff will see a 1.9 percent raise in the first year, a 2.9 percent raise in year two and a 2.3 percent raise in 2014-2015, according to the agreement.

"It went very smoothly and we were very pleased the GREA was receptive of what we presented to them and also, we were very receptive with what they presented to us," said school board president Rona McNabola following the vote.

"This contract represents a collective understanding of the challenging economic times and a mutual commitment to excellence in education," added Anne Camp, GREA president, in a statement. "GREA members look forward to continuing to provide all Glen Rock students with a quality education that they expect and deserve."

Salaries, with an average increase of 2.36 percent over the life of the contract, are above the county average of roughly 2 percent.

The uptick won't break the bank, according to school officials.

"This is well within the budgets we are anticipating over the next three years," McNabola said, adding that the salary guide figures largely resemble those of the previous agreement. Staffing figures for the life of the contract are projected to remain consistent with current numbers, she said.

In terms of health benefits, staff members will be contributing the greater sum of two figures: either a minimum 1.5 percent of the annual base pensionable salary; or a percentage of the cost of the district's health insurance premiums, ranging from a low of .75% for family coverage to those making $25,000 or less, to a high of 35 percent where the individual makes $95,000 or more a year.

According to the agreement, the 7.5% health benefits contribution for dependent coverage (which had been negotiated in the previous contract) will be dropped in the second year of the deal, as a result of the new state-mandated health contributions.

Negotiations began in late January with a tentative agreement locked up in July. The GREA ratified the deal last Thursday.

"The Board of Education appreciates that, while contract negotiations are often an adversarial process in many other districts, this was a totally focused effort by all concerned to arrive at a contract for the next 3 years that is in the best interest of the entire community," McNabola said in a written statement.

Have a question or news tip? Contact editor James Kleimann at James.Kleimann@patch.com, or find us on Facebook and Twitter. For news straight to your inbox every morning, sign up for our daily newsletter.

John Hahn September 25, 2012 at 03:57 AM
My favorite line: The uptick won't break the bank, according to school officials. Yes, it won't because the BOE seems to think we the taxpayers all have trust funds in which we dip into to pay any tax increases. I encourage all of GREA's teaching professionals make a commitment to their students and those student's taxpaying parents to not take ANY days off during the school year. There are 183 days. Not all are teaching days. If you are pleased with this agreement, your 100% attendance will be appreciated by all except substitute teachers who will have less work in Glen Rock. Can't you attend those conferences on the weekend or in the summer? Do you really need to schedule elective surgery during the school year? Glen Rock is a great place to be a professional educator. Your daily presence in the classroom is what I, as a tax paying parent, ask of you all. When you are not in school teaching, your students miss out on your expertise. It can & does make a difference. We are all in this together.
Lauren Imbruglia September 25, 2012 at 12:09 PM
Are you saying that if a teacher is ill, they should still come and interact with children? I wouldn't want my child's sick teacher working closely with them. No thank you!
Ridgewood Mom September 25, 2012 at 12:25 PM
Yes Lauren. I would also like my children's teachers to stay current, regarding best practices, by attending relevant professional conferences during the year. I think that it is a critical mistake to think of these sorts of things as a case of teachers taking personal days for the purpose of relaxing in the sun on the golf course.
jp1 September 25, 2012 at 01:13 PM
Lauren read carefully the above the man said elective surgery not an immediate illness.
JAFO September 25, 2012 at 02:19 PM
Curious if you knew how many GR or RW teachers actually attend the "teacher's convention" for which they are given the day off in November?
Rock September 25, 2012 at 03:48 PM
You can check faculty attendance numbers via the NJ State report cards. Its reported in the aggregate and the range is 95 / 96% faculty attendance on average. So, on the surface, this does not appear to be a problem. Student attendance rates appear to be in the same range but a bit lower in the HS -- with all HS grades in the 94-95% range -- so it appears equally important to make sure your son/daughter attends school so they can take advantage of the teacher's expertise.
Ridgewood Mom September 25, 2012 at 07:44 PM
No I don't.
Rene September 25, 2012 at 08:09 PM
Three year deal. Well done by Both sides.
lee resnick September 25, 2012 at 09:30 PM
JAFO: It's called the NJEA Convention, not the teacher's convention. Let's address the incorrect use of the apostrophe later.
Ridgewood Mom September 25, 2012 at 10:05 PM
Isn't "The NJEA" a luxurious spa in the French Riviera? :)
Quantanya Richardson September 25, 2012 at 11:43 PM
So tired of teacher bashing...parents are constantly telling teachers how to teach, what to teach, emailing like crazy and hovering like helicopters...stop whining and have your kids do what THEY are supposed to do...sure, all teachers are not all jewels, but the majority are professionals who care about the kids...the parents need to get over this age of entitlement!! Stop coddling and enabling and get these kids on the right track!!!!


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