USD 232 in De Soto has reached a tentative agreement with the De Soto Teachers’ Association on a new contract for the coming school year.
After a brief presentation and discussion on Monday, the USD 232 Board of Education unanimously approved the Professional Negotiated Agreement for 2021-22.
The deal is the result of a process by the school district and the teachers’ association to negotiate compensation, hours and amounts of work.
“Once again, this recent negotiations process was positive, professional, with both teams identifying important issues and working together to reach a reasonable agreement,” said Alvie Cater, district spokesperson, in a presentation to the board.
The school board also unanimously approved compensation packages for employees who are not covered by the contract.
What’s in the teachers’ agreement:
- $500 added to the teachers’ base pay, including all individuals not on the salary schedule
- New column in salary schedule
- $30 increase to base of supplemental agreements
- 2.51% increase to the salary schedule
Currently, a first-year teacher with a bachelor’s degree in USD 232 earns $43,000, which is roughly in line with other Johnson County public school districts. That would get bumped up to $43,500 this year.
The district says the total cost of the salary increase for professional employees is $782,070.
Additionally, the district is planning for a new position — a sponsor to oversee the High School Rocket Club — as well as increasing the hourly in-house coverage rate from $18 an hour to $20 an hour and providing some extra duty pay for athletics.
The total annual increase for supplemental positions amounts to $17,660, according to the district.
Here are some other negotiated items in the agreement:
- Increase the buyback of unused discretionary leave and personal leave to $120 per day
- Create an advisory salary schedule committee to review the salary schedule on an annual basis
- Provide a duty-free lunch of not less than 27 minutes per day for the next two years.
- Limit faculty meetings to a maximum of two (2) per month
- Clarify language regarding health certificates required by the state of Kansas for professional employees\
- Increase bereavement leave to three days per occurrence
- Update language for military leave to comply with federal statutes
- Add tax-sheltered annuities (e.g., 403(b) and 457(b) plan options) to list of fringe benefits
In addition, Cater said a new advisory salary schedule committee will meet, perhaps this fall, to review the salary schedule and develop suggestions for negotiating the salary schedule moving forward.
The ultimate goal is to find ways to make it better and more competitive, he said.
What’s next: The De Soto Teachers’ Association will seek ratification of the agreement by a vote of the district’s professional employees represented by the association.
The agreement would go into effect upon ratification.
Below is a copy of the proposed agreement approved by the board of education: