Ann Arbor school board approves pact with teachers union

The Ann Arbor Board of Education unanimously approved a new agreement with its teachers on Wednesday, June 23 following six months of negotiations with administrators and the Ann Arbor Education Association.

The tentative agreement was reached on June 14 and was voted upon by AAEA members last week with 738 members voting yes and 181 voting no. The teachers made more than 5 percent in concessions in this agreement, officials said.

According to a statement from the district, the agreement aligns the needs and interests of students first followed equally by staff and administration. It “allows the district to anticipate and plan for erratic financial situations and allows for preemptive planning rather then reacting to unanticipated financial situations.”

The district will immediately begin calling back teachers who were issued layoff notices in the spring, allowing for new teachers to be retained, officials said. “This agreement is truly a partnership with attention to programmatic and instructional detail. Both the AAEA and AAPS administration and Trustees thank the community for their patience as this innovative contract was developed.”

The new contract allows for discussions on merit pay and new teacher evaluations to move forward which was a demand both bargaining teams heard from the community.

The financial package through 2013 includes a formula for revenue sharing based on increases in the total general fund revenue with adjustments for increases in the state retirement rate and gifts to the district from private donors. This recognizes the teacher’s contribution to the district’s financial crisis while partnering with the district to retain and attract new students.

Click here for a downloadable link to the presentation to the school board about the AAEA contract. It is listed under the June 23 meeting schedule.

The school calendars through 2012-13 will be available on the district’s Web site, by Friday, June 25. The calendars follow the state requirement for the first day of school after Labor Day, the countywide common breaks for winter and spring as well as the AAPS mid-winter break.

The Ann Arbor Public School District serves the City of Ann Arbor and parts of eight surrounding townships covering 125 square miles.  The district has 20 elementary schools, one K-8 open school, five middle schools, three comprehensive high schools, three alternative high schools, one pre-school and one adult education program.  As of September 2008, enrollment totaled 16,458 (excluding adult education and a portion of pre-school). The district employs 3,000 full and part-time staff members. Approximately 82 percent of the teaching staff holds a master’s degree or above. The district serves a diverse ethnic and socioeconomic population of students with over 36 different countries represented by students in the district and 74 different languages spoken.

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