Lincoln, NE (February 23, 2021) In a proposal presented to the Lincoln Board of Education on Tuesday, the Lincoln Education Association (LEA) and Lincoln Public Schools have reached a tentative contract agreement with teachers for the 2021-22 school year.
The tentative agreement represents a careful balance between recognizing the valuable contributions our teachers make for Lincoln Public Schools – especially as front-line workers during a pandemic – while also acknowledging the recent revenue decline including a significant drop in state aid.
The tentative agreement approved by a vote of LEA members provides a total compensation package increase of 1.53 percent for the 2021-22 school year. The tentative agreement includes the district’s contribution for increases with health insurance, retirement, Social Security and step movement (approximately $500 to $1,800) for certificated staff. The tentative agreement also includes a reduction in the 191-day teacher calendar by two professional development/teacher work days, and a reduction in the Extra Standard budget (for activities and athletics).
Superintendent Steve Joel: “We are most appreciative of the professionalism and dedication demonstrated by our educators, especially in this most unique and highly challenging year. Our students, families and community are indeed fortunate to have such highly qualified and dedicated teachers in our classrooms. This continued investment in staff is a primary reason we are able to recruit, develop and retain the very best professionals. This agreement recognizes the value we place on that expertise but is also mindful of the challenging financial situation that our community and state are facing.”
LEA President Rita Bennett: “Teaching during a pandemic has required so much from our teachers, yet they have not missed a beat in their dedication to serving our community’s children. It was important to negotiate an Agreement that recognizes the monetary constraints the district faces while still providing financial consideration for teachers. The Agreement also includes contractual adjustments that are supportive of teachers’ needs and is representative of LEA’s collaborative work with the district.”
Board President Kathy Danek: “The Lincoln Board of Education is committed to hiring and supporting the highest caliber teachers, while being fiscally accountable to the community. The Board deeply appreciates the care, consideration, and integrity that both the teachers and administration brought to the negotiations process. The result is a tentative agreement that serves our community’s children and reflects our community’s values.”
BACKGROUND: The previous agreement for the 2020-2021 year provided a total package increase of 2.91 percent. That included an average salary increase of 2.30 percent for the year. Lincoln Public Schools is one of the lowest spending school districts in the state for per-pupil costs and has been for decades.
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