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After 20 Months of Talks, Shorewood Teachers Have a New Contract

Pact calls for 3.1 percent hike in compensation; administrative contracts also approved by board.

After nearly two years of negotiations, the teachers union and Shorewood School District have reached agreement on a new contract.

The two-year deal, which covers the 2009-10 school year and this year, expires on June 30. It calls for an average annual increase of 3.13 percent in total compensation. Teachers will receive the increases retroactive to July 2010.

The agreement was ratified Monday night by members of the Shorewood Education Association and approved Tuesday by the School Board.

Under the new contract, there is an average salary increase of 1.8 percent each year with the salary for an entry-level teacher rises from $32,506 to $37,350, while a teacher at the top of the school will earn $76,546, compared to $74,319 under the old agreement.

Under new contract, retirees will receive only 61 months of health care benefits, compared to 96 months under the old deal.

Health care benefits did not change significantly for teachers, although they will have to pay more in co-pay for prescriptions and office visits.

Cash in lieu of health benefits were decreased from $8,200 to $6,000.

“This voluntary agreement completes 20 months of discussions between district and SEA representatives,” School Board President Paul Zovic said.

Zovic called the deal fair and said the concessions in health insurance will help reduce the district's operating costs.

"There were some significant concessions made by teachers... it was fair, it's good for the teachers, it's good for the district," Zovic said.

Unlike some Wisconsin districts, however, McCann said Shorewood did not rush to settle the contract before Gov. Scott Walker's budget repair bill becomes law. That bill would take away most collective bargaining rights from public employees.

"We were very close prior to this (budget repair bill) happening," McCann said. "It just takes us some time to do the negotiations, there was a lot of back and forth."

In fact, since the new contract will expire on June 30, the next agreement will be subject to whatever new law is passed.

The School Board on Tuesday also renewed McCann's contract through the 2012-13 school years in a deal that includes no raise or additional benefits.

His annual salary will remain at $152,250.

The board also approved administrators' contracts through 2012-13.  The list includes Atwater Principal Tim Kenney, high school Assistant Principal Mark Harris, Athlectics Director Bill Haurey, Lake Bluff Principal Kirk Juffer, Recreation Department Director Deb Stolz, intermediate school Principal Anthony Strancke and Business Director Mark Boehlke.

Wages and compensation will be determined after performance evaluations for those administrators are conducted in August, McCann said.

Adam Schwartz February 26, 2011 at 03:48 PM
You're basically saying, "Privatize schools, but community members still pay a little bit." (Correct me if I'm wrong.) There still needs to be federal and state aid available, if this were to happen, so that the less wealthy families don't have to pay so much. I mean, running a school costs a LOT of money. It costs SIS something like, what, $10 million a year? That means Shorewoodians would have to have at least a 10%-20% hike in property taxes (I haven't done the math, however I can imagine the cost). And for those families who have children in the schools, a lot more. The financially needy, I'm sure, won't even be able to afford that. I know my parents couldn't. And the reason that so many choose to pay such high taxes as it is, is because of the quality education Shorewood students receive. We force them to pay much higher taxes, they'll move. The schools will collapse, meaning students can't get as great of an education, and not to mention the Village would have to go bankrupt. Even more people unemployed during a recovery. No one should believe that's okay.
Joe Peterlin February 26, 2011 at 05:15 PM
NEA General Counsel Bob Chanin Reveals Organization’s True Intentions In his farewell address to the National Education Association General Assembly, NEA General Counsel Bob Chanin provided stark insight into the organization’s true intentions. In his speech, he stated: “Despite what some among us would like to believe, it is not because of our creative ideas, it is not because of the merit of our positions. It is not because we care about children and it is not because we have a vision for a great public school for every child. The NEA and its affiliates are effective advocates because we have power, and we have power because there are more than 3.2 million people who are willing to pay us hundred of millions of dollars in dues each year.” To watch the whole video, see the following link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-piPkgAUo0w&feature=youtu.be
Bob McBride February 26, 2011 at 05:30 PM
You're wrong. The schools would be owned by the community, i.e. the village. That's not privatization. If the community truly wants to provide its citizens with the schools, they'll find a way. It may not allow for the kinds of contracts they can currently write while being subsidized by the state and fed. It may not allow for Cadillac Cafeterias, like the ones my village elected to erect. Or maybe it will, if the citizenry are willing to foot the bill. If the only way, for instance, that WFB can build deluxe dining facilities is by having other stuff subsidized, then the cost of running the schools and, in fact, building the 5 star cafeterias is being grossly underestimated. The beauty of a self-contained, citizen and user financed school system is that your school board and administrator can actually have a level control over the way the schools operate. The school administrator can actually administrate, instead of just rubber stamping a bunch of stuff. So, for instance, if the Shorewood citizenry decide they want the curriculum to include a class entitled "Republicans are Baadddd", they can do so without actually having to worry about whether or not people outside their enlightened community are going to butt in and rain on their freak parade. Local control, local funding, local accountability. It's the way to go.
Adam Schwartz February 26, 2011 at 09:33 PM
Joe, there are some teachers who do care about children. Just because the higher-ups don't, doesn't mean that the lower guys on the totem pole don't. Shorewood wouldn't be so great if they didn't have such excellent and caring teachers.
Adam Schwartz February 26, 2011 at 09:56 PM
Bob, Shorewood doesn't have outstanding food, nor do we have a "Cadillac Cafeteria." The Board puts its money elsewhere: Quality teachers and administrators, bettering the places for students to study, and giving students the best possibilities for them to succeed. (I'm a student at Shorewood High, which is why I say that.) That's what makes a great school. Without federal or state funds, it would be near to impossible to reach such greatness. Yes, it could be community funded, but as I said before, most, especially Shorewoodians, refuse to pay any more taxes. Now as for administrators "rubber stamping a bunch of stuff": There are times when my principal does have to "rubber stamp" some paperwork, yes. Many of the other times, though, he is in discussions between teachers and other administrators at the other schools on how to make the District even better. He would still be having those conversations even if it weren't for the aid/test scores. Every time I go into his office to talk about clubs and other things, he is always more than willing to talk to me, or to do whatever he can to speak to me. Why? Because he cares about me and all the other 600-some students.
Bob McBride February 26, 2011 at 10:24 PM
Well your Shorewoodians are either going to get used to paying more taxes, or someone is going to have to do a better job of negotiating union contracts than they are now, because the shortfalls that are happening on a state level are about to become a reality for Shorewood and many other communities in this state. You may not think having your local community solely support the schools is a good idea, but you are going to get a taste of what getting by with a lot less outside support is like. Communities are going to have to look at what it really costs to have "good schools" and figure out ways to maintain the quality while reducing those costs, or drastically increase their local taxes to support what they have in place. Saying that isn't possible isn't going to be good enough. They're going to have to do it. The well has run dry on a state level and if you've been paying attention to what's been going on in Washington as well as what's been going on in Madison, you'll note we're in big trouble there now too. To be honest, if I were your age I'd prefer that the enormous deficits on all levels be addressed now rather than pushed off and ignored until it became my turn to pay for the mistakes of my elders. It would be a shame for all the hard work you put into your schooling now to be all for naught because our economy collapsed under the weight of the massive amounts of debt we are accumulating now.
Adam Schwartz February 27, 2011 at 01:52 AM
On the national level, yes, there is a tremendous debt that I am not happy about. I'll concede to that. Federal taxes need to be raised, but not state. On the state level, there isn't much of a deficit. At all. (Assuming that the things we're paying for remain constant and don't go over budget.) Not to mention that stuff goes over budget all the time, yet we're fine. In fact, I highly suggest you watch this. It's 10 minutes long, but well worth it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y7e4bj5rrd8
Joe Peterlin February 27, 2011 at 02:03 AM
Yes, Shorewood has some excellent teachers and yes, some of them do care about the students some of the time.
Adam Schwartz February 27, 2011 at 02:05 AM
Thank you. I'm glad we could reach a consensus :-)
Joe Peterlin February 27, 2011 at 02:07 AM
Budget Repair Bill Protects Worker’s Rights There have been many factual inaccuracies being reported by both Democrats in the State Legislature and the media. Below is a list of provisions that ARE NOT included in the Budget Repair Bill. o The bill does not eliminate public employee unions. o The bill does not eliminate collective bargaining for public employee unions. o The bill does not reduce anyone’s rate of pay. o The bill does not eliminate any accrued vacation or sick leave. o The bill does not abolish the sick leave conversion credit. o The bill does not eliminate family and medical leave. o The bill does not continue Jim Doyle’s practice of furloughing state workers.
Bob McBride February 27, 2011 at 03:41 AM
I clicked your link and once it became apparent (immediately) that it was Rachel Maddow I honestly had no interest spending 10 minutes of my life that I'd never get back viewing it. I can watch her any night of the week if I care to. Taxes don't need to be raised, spending needs to be cut. The state's budget deficit is significant. Running a deficit endlessly is foolhardy. We're not going to spend our way out of our problems. If you're being told the opposite of any of these things by those "good teachers" in Shorewood, then I hope you continue to compensate them extravagantly so they'll stay there. Not only can we not afford them, we can't afford to have them teaching our students stuff like that.
Adam Schwartz February 27, 2011 at 04:53 AM
True, but had you not seen that episode, I made it available to you. I just wanted to point out that at one point she stated that an arbitrator in Milwaukee stated that Milwaukee County was NOT in a budget crunch when Governor (at the time County Executive) Walker fired all of the security guards at the Milwaukee County Courthouse. In fact, the arbitrator required that these security guards be re-employed and paid for the time lost. That total came to $430,000. He claimed that by terminating these security guards, the County would save about $750,000. Well, turned out it would only save the County $411,000. $19,000 wasted because of a lie. How can we trust him when he tells us that we're in a deficit when he did this and lied to Milwaukee County residents? Taxes also need to be raised. Both need to happen, especially in wartime. My excellent teachers have chosen to remain objective over the situation, giving both sides of it, even though many of them are not for it. And I never said spending WOULD get us out of our problems. Nor did I imply that. If I did, I apologize. I know that it won't. We can afford them. Other spending can be cut, and should be. Education needs to be the last thing cut. Without education, how can a country succeed? The governor also wants to fill the rest of his "Secret Service"-like spots. And the point of that exactly is...why? Governor Doyle got by with 4 just fine. He wants/needs (he claims to need) 6 (or is it 7?). Again, point? Waste money?
Bob McBride February 27, 2011 at 05:24 AM
Considering the behavior exhibited during this ridiculous circus of a "peaceful demonstration" in Madison, I wouldn't begrudge Walker any additional security he may request. As for the cost involved in that, surely it's a lot less than the cost of capitol security, custodial and other personnel over the past couple weeks dealing with all the buffoonery. Education is not a sacred cow. If anything, it's an area that's been the least scrutinized and the one that lends itself best to drastic cost savings. It's ripe for cutting and those cuts should be made. They can be done without significantly effecting the quality of education. There's plenty of slop in the system. There's more to quality education than the amount of money dumped into it. You don't have to look much farther than MPS to see that. Nobody ever wants their personal ox gored and since you're a student it's understandable that it takes precedence in your life, just as it does all of those who are employed in the field. In your case, it's easy to suggest that taxes be raised since your not in a position of paying any significant taxes at this point. You'll have your chance someday. Your tune will change in that regard as well.
Adam Schwartz February 27, 2011 at 05:41 AM
The protesters have been very clean. As a matter of fact, they continue to organize volunteers to clean up the rotunda and outside the Capitol. Also, they got out of the way of the custodial crew, after forgoing a week without cleaning, when they closed a couple levels to clean. Just saying. MPS has other issues. (There was a very good article that shows this in the Journal Sentinel.) I agree, some schools need to be closed. But for the schools that have shown over and over that they're great, those need to be the last to get cut, like Shorewood. Although not significant, yes, I've had to pay taxes. No, I wasn't happy to see my first paycheck say that taxes were taken out, but I later realized that many social programs, my schooling, and an abundance of other things were being paid by that. And Hell yes, I was proud. I was proud that I'd been FINALLY able to contribute to something I, and millions of others, have used.
Joe Peterlin February 27, 2011 at 04:47 PM
Careful Adam, by that argument, the highest educated and therefore the richest people in the U.S. must be the smartest. I don't think that's in the liberal playbook.
Adam Schwartz February 27, 2011 at 05:04 PM
They have every right to be there. They're standing up for what's right. And we've already gone through your last comment.
Adam Schwartz February 27, 2011 at 05:06 PM
If the Democrats had control and they wanted to pass something you didn't approve of, would you not go there and protest, maybe forgo a few showers?
Bob McBride February 27, 2011 at 05:46 PM
Adam, Private employers don't ordinarily look the other way so that their employees can take several days off to participate in drum circles and '60s era freak-fests. Then again, I'd expect that my Republican senate members would stay on the job debating the merits (or lack thereof) the legislation rather than running away to Illinois for a week, thus making it unnecessary for me to miss work as well.
Adam Schwartz February 27, 2011 at 06:36 PM
If Governor Walker and the Senate Republicans were willing to actually compromise and not say, "Okay, VOTE NOW!" they wouldn't have run to Illinois. Again, they're standing up for what they--and their constituents--believe in. Shorewood did not look the other way. In fact, a lot of the teachers who went are now facing disciplinary actions. (For example, instead of one day docked pay, they're facing a week. Many of those who are encountering this are more than willing to take that.) In addition, most of the teachers who DID decide to go to Madison are now going on the weekends and after school.
Bob McBride February 27, 2011 at 07:25 PM
Sorry, that's baloney. The right thing to do is stay, fight the good fight (as have many on both sides prior to this) and do the best you can to represent those who elected you to do so. They probably aren't going to win this one but that's part of the way it goes. They don't get to win them all. They may have a chance next time around. Running away and refusing to do your job is childish and should be grounds for dismissal, whether you're a public employee or a member of the Senate. I'm not surprised by the childish behavior (spend most of your working day in the company of children dealing with them on their level and some of that's going to find its way in to other portions of your life, in the case of the teachers involved) but it should not be tolerated.
Adam Schwartz February 28, 2011 at 12:00 AM
Like I said, if the Republicans were willing to listen, this would be a totally different story. I'm sure if the Republicans were in the position the Dems are in now, they would have fled.
Bob McBride February 28, 2011 at 02:02 AM
I know what you said. You're still wrong.
Adam Schwartz February 28, 2011 at 11:16 PM
Hopefully, we'll never have to find out.
Adam Schwartz February 28, 2011 at 11:17 PM
I do, yes.
Joe Peterlin March 01, 2011 at 12:09 AM
Bill Gates didn't graduate from college. Does that make him unqualified to earn more than Blane McCann?
Jodi Gallob March 30, 2011 at 06:42 PM
Bob is right on. Adam your too young to know what really is at stake here. Until you have a mortgage, children, a quarter of your earnings goes to the government and some wasteful entitlements - you can have an opinion. I am a middle class taxpayer who wants reform of all entitlements, wasteful spending, across the board, state or federal. Taxpayers have the right to a voice if they are footing the bill, correct? Adam look up the Emeritus Law that has gone through the system of late, in Green Bay and was passed...that is what Walker, taxpayers, yes me who gets paid $27,000.00 a year (not $100,000.00) agrees is wasteful spending with taxpayers dollars.
Jodi Gallob March 30, 2011 at 06:51 PM
And no Adam - the Republicans would not have fled. And Republicans as Democrats have to live with the outcomes regarding each other. The Republicans and Scott Walker were there, waiting, waiting some more, waiting to negotiate, it was IRRESPONSIBLE of the democrats once again on taxpayers dollars to cause chaos, kicking and screaming. I feel that the Republicans are beyond a doubt acting with more integrity than the democrats, watch the latest commercials - rude, out of context and mean (give peace a chance?,) watch the town hall meetings -more chaos, the state capital protests - more chaos and vandalism (once again payed by the taxpayers - me.) I'm an independent who believes in Fiscal Responsibility, state and federal wide. Google Fiscal Responsibility - it makes sense for jobs, our economy, our ever accruing debt, accountability of spending and the future generations. No Republican, Democrat, Independent has an issue paying teachers a reasonable salary, again Adam it is the wasteful spending, like the Emeritus program, and many others that taxpayers, the middle class want to be addressed. There is nothing harmful or hateful in that. Honestly, I see a lot of hate from the democrats right now, who are not getting their way. Believe me, I have had to sit through other elected leaders and laws waiting for it to change. We are giving Obama a chance, give Walker a chance.
nancy peske April 04, 2011 at 10:25 PM
Once again, enrollment was up, significantly, last year. An inconvenient fact, I know, but I feel like I'm the lone voice out here noting the flattening then uptick of enrollment. Second, is Shorewood really the only district that's experienced enrollment declines and rising taxes? I'd like to see some evidence of that.
nancy peske April 04, 2011 at 10:27 PM
Joe, citing the exception doesn't make an argument. You can't argue with mountains of statistics showing that people with college degrees earn more than those who don't. Well, you can, but people will think you're being goofy.
nancy peske April 04, 2011 at 10:30 PM
1) So, no federal dollars to public schools? And how do we implement IDEA? If a child has autism or cerebral palsy and lives in a district that can't afford to provide a free and appropriate education in the least restrictive environment, they just go ahead and break the law and provide him with an inappropriate education given his disability? Are you saying you want to overturn IDEA?

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