KUSD To Approve Small Teacher Pay Hike

Kenosha Unified School Board will vote to approve a minimal pay increase for teachers this week.

District and Kenosha Education Association negotiators met earlier this month and tentatively OK’d a collective bargaining agreement that would increase the base wage across the board by 0.12 percent.

As a result of Wisconsin’s controversial Municipal Employment Relations Act, better known as “Act 10,” general municipal employees — a category that includes teachers — can collectively bargain with districts on base wages but not on other subjects such as hours and conditions of employment.

Moreover, base wages can be bargained only up to a maximum limit determined by a statutory formula. In this case, the maximum is 0.12 percent. Any increase exceeding the limit must be approved by district electors in a referendum.

Kenosha Unified administration is recommending approval of the increase for certified full- and part-time teachers under an Oct. 4 tentative agreement with the KEA, whose members must ratify the union contract.

If approved, the pay raise will be retroactive to July 1 and run through June 30, 2017, of next year, with the increase distributed across the board to bargaining unit members.

At the same time, under an administration recommendation, if the board approves the increase for KEA members, the same pay raise will be considered for nonrepresented employees. That would include so-called “full-time equivalent” employees in the following groups: administrative, support, technical; carpenters and painters; educational support personnel; interpreters; secretarial; and service personnel.

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