After hitting a wall earlier this year, the Port Chester School District requested a state mediator to come in and help the district come to an agreement with the Port Chester Teachers Association.
“We held a meeting for ratification of the contract vote and for the annual performance review vote,” said Teachers Union President Linda O’Connor. “Both passed. We want a contract and we hope [the School Board] says yes.”
On Thursday afternoon, the a new 4-year contract for the district's teachers.
“This is a major relief and it puts us in a good position going forward,” said Superintendent Edward Kliszus. “Had they done nothing, they would have gotten much larger raises but they were willing to sit at the table and be problem solvers. They decided to sacrifice and take less for the good of the district.”
“People have discussed previously that this doesn’t solve all of our problems. It’s certainly not going to be a cake walk going forward but this puts a lot of things in place that are going to have long term results,” said Carolee Brakewood, school board member. “It’s going to make things a lot easier. Basically to save jobs, keep programs intact and deal with the tax cap because it was looking very daunting without a settlement.”
The Memorandum of Agreement will go into effect July 1, 2011. The PCTA membership ratified the agreement on Thursday in voting at 1 p.m. Read more on the details of their agreement in this .
“The 7.5 candidates will be chosen based on seniority, certification and tenor,” said Assistant Superintendent Frank Fanelli.
13.5 jobs as reading teachers were cut in the 2012-13 budget. Two reading teachers in the middle school will regain their positions and the other 7.5 positions will be filled from the previously-abolished 11.5 positions. Due to attrition, these 9.5 positions could be reinstated.
“The individuals who are brought back will not all be returning as reading teachers. Some are certified in other areas. The 9.5 positions should be filled by September,” said Fanelli.