On Nov. 19, the Board of Education (BOE) voted unanimously to approve a new, three-year teacher's contract with a 9.6 percent wage increase spread over three years that boils down to approximately 5.7 percent when health care costs and a new required high deductible are factored in.
The contract is headed to the Representative Town Meeting (RTM) Education Committee for review during two special meetings Nov. 25 and Dec. 9, (both are set for 7 p.m. at Branford Fire Headquarters on North Main Street). The committee is expected to bring its recommendation to the full RTM for a final vote on the contract on Dec. 10.
RTM Education Committee Chair Frank Twohill said the committee will hear a presentation of the contract on Nov. 25 and ask questions, to be followed on Dec. 9 by final questions, comments and a vote on the proposed contract.
Twohill described the "bare bones" of the contract, as going up by step and wage increase totals of 3.1 percent in year one, 3.1 percent in year two and 3.4 percent in the third year.
"However, the impact will be much less due to higher teacher contributions to their health care costs plus the new required high deductible health care plan. So, it is expected that the actual increases each year will be considerably less with these health care cost changes factored in," said Twohill.
With those costs factored in, the three years are expected to inrease overall by 2.1 in the first year, 1.8 percent in year two and and 1.8 percent in year three, explained Twohill. He also noted that, in the third year, the increase of 1.8 percent may be less due to anticipated teacher retirements.