At a special meeting of the Westlake City Board of Education on July 19, the Board voted to adopt the newly negotiated contract with the Westlake Teachers Association (WTA). After more than a year of negotiations, both parties have reached a three-year agreement for the 2015-2016, 2016-2017, and 2017-2018 school years. On Monday, July 18, WTA members voted to accept the agreement reached by the negotiating committee.
As reported earlier, the agreement includes across-the-board freezes in base salaries for all three years, along with modest step increases for each of the three years for teachers with less than 20 years of experience. There will be a one-time longevity payment provided to teachers above 20 years of experience who are not eligible for the step increases. The increases are possible due to savings stemming from significant health insurance changes, as well as requiring employees’ spouses to take insurance through their own employer without any subsidy from the district.
WTA President Patrick McMorrow said, “Reaching this agreement was an important step for all of us toward focusing on the future. The WTA is looking forward to the upcoming school year and educating for excellence.”
Board President Carol Winter said, “This agreement is a fair one for our teachers and our residents. While the process may have been longer than ideal, we worked collaboratively to reach a resolution and we are proud of our students, teachers, staff and our community.”