Brevard Schools, Teachers Union Meet For Third Time to Negotiate Salary and Bonuses

By  //  December 18, 2018

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union rejected the offer on behalf of all teachers and other instructional employees

Brevard Public Schools has reached a tentative contract settlement with the union that represents 3,111 support-staff employees including clerks, cafeteria workers, bus drivers, mechanics and instructional assistants.

BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – Leaders from Brevard Public Schools and the Brevard Federation of Teachers met Monday to negotiate for a third time on salary and bonuses.

The union rejected the offer on behalf of all teachers and other instructional employees covered by its contract and said it would formally declare an impasse.

Below are the key points in the district’s latest compensation offer:

• BPS offered to pay the nearly 5,000 employees covered by the BFT contract a nonrecurring district bonus of $1,000. The bonus would be paid by Jan. 31 if the union and school board were able to agree on a contract by January. New teachers would be eligible for the bonus, but teachers who earned an “unsatisfactory” rating on their most recent evaluation would not.

• BPS offered to give an annual salary increase of $770 to instructional employees rated “highly effective” on their most recent annual performance evaluations. For a highly effective teacher earning today’s median BPS teacher’s salary, base pay would increase from $45,798 to $46,568.

•  For 349 teachers rated “effective,” BPS offered a base salary increase of $540.

• BPS offered to pay an additional supplement of $165 to teachers who are certified as exceptional-education teachers.

• Combined impact: For a teacher rated highly effective, the combination of the proposed raise and district bonus would increase total pay for the year by $1,770. (This does not include any state-paid bonuses such as Best and Brightest). For a teacher rated effective, the proposed raise and bonus would increase total pay by $1,540. Pay for new teachers and those rated “needs improvement” would increase $1,000.

• If approved by both sides by January, raises would take effect by Feb. 15. A lump-sum retroactively covering the raise for the school year would be paid Feb. 28.

• Money for the raises would come from budget savings elsewhere and the portion of state funding not mandated this year by the Legislature to be spent mostly on school security and student mental health services.

• Money for bonuses would come from drawing down emergency reserves and reducing the number of instructional positions budgeted in “reserve” to cope with class-size mandates and accommodating students with disabilities. Those reductions cannot be duplicated next year.

• The School Board funded no other new budget priorities or major projects this year, making pay increases for BPS teachers and staff its No. 1 local priority.

What’s next? To resolve the impasse, district and union representatives will make their cases to a special magistrate on a date still to be determined. The magistrate will then make a recommendation to the Brevard County School Board, which will render a final decision.

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