Archbold schools, teachers reach accord

By David J. Coehrs - [email protected]

A three-year contract agreement between Archbold schools and the teachers’ union includes salary hikes and stabilized insurance costs.

Ratified almost unanimously by the certified members of the Archbold Education Association (AEA) earlier this month, and approved by the Archbold Area Schools Board of Education, the contract takes effect Aug. 1 and remains active through July 31, 2019.

Noteworthy changes, according to AEA President Kent Vandock, include:

• A two percent increase to the base salary of certified staff during the 2016-17 school year, increasing two percent for the 2017-18 school year and 1.75 percent for the 2018-19 school year

• A reduction in the number of calamity days for students, from 10 to eight, to match the number allotted for staff members

• The process for determining staff reductions when reductions are necessary, in accordance with changes within the Ohio Revised Code

• The addition of a boys head soccer coach and assistant softball and boys and girls basketball coaches to supplemental positions

• An increase in the Board of Education’s contribution to the Health Savings Account

• The addition of Step 33 to the certified teacher salary schedules due to changes to Ohio’s teachers retirement system, which call for a later retirement date.

Vandock said negotiations involved the interest-based bargaining model, and the certified staff vote “was hugely in support of the agreement, close to unanimous.” He called negotiators “mutually beneficial, productive, and very respectful toward one another. (The contract) met the best need of all district stakeholders.”

In an issued statement, he continued: “We believe this contract supports our teachers and enables them to stay focused on the students they serve every day. Throughout the process, our goal was to work collaboratively with the Administration and Board of Education to meet the needs of our school district. We were pleased with the collaborative nature of the process.”

Superintendent Aaron Rex, said, “We have an excellent staff that cares about not only our kids, but also our district and this community. We have worked together during these contract negotiations to ensure the financial stability of our district. Our goals throughout the process were to build unity among our staff and create a contract that works for everyone.”

In a statement, Board President Jon Lugbill said, “The new contract exemplifies the Archbold Area Schools mission statement in which the Archbold Area Schools are committed to the pursuit of continuous improvement in the quality of education that stresses teamwork, integrity, the dignity of the individual, and a desire to make a positive difference in the greater community. “

By David J. Coehrs

[email protected]

David J. Coehrs can be reached at 419-335-2010.

David J. Coehrs can be reached at 419-335-2010.