The Estherville Lincoln Central Education Association proposed a 5.2 percent increase in what the district is paying teachers currently when the association made its initial offer Tuesday night at the high-school media center.
The proposal includes a $600 increase in the salary base to $29,330 for beginning teachers with a bachelor's degree. It also includes lane changes and an increase in the supplemental pay schedule.
Those present who were representing the district were Chuck Fandel, teaching at the high school; Robyn Swisher, representing the middle school; Lili Jensen, representing all levels and David Finley, representing the high school. Jenny Christensen, who was not able to be present, represents elementary teachers.
Representing the district were board members Don Schiltz and Duane Schnell, superintendent Tara Paul and attorney Brett Nitzschke of Lynch Dallas of Cedar Rapids.
Fandel opened Tuesday night's session with an air of cooperation, thanking the board for its hard work on the process. "I think both parties understand the importance of our contract," he said.
The first change proposed in the contract was that Step 1 school nurses would be paid 80 percent of the hiring base with increments at 80 percent of the dollar value of increments. That would mean an increase for Step 1 nurses from $19,249 to $23,464.
Also, a maximum of 12 years of teaching would be allowed when placing a new teacher on the schedule, up from the current 10.
Bereavement leave would be extended to aunts or uncles and additional days could be granted for the death of a spouse or child at the discretion of the superintendent or his or her designee.
Some other items under the association's proposal are:
n One more personal leave day with the employee picking up the cost of the substitute.
n Adding father-in-law, mother-in-law or grandparents to family leave.
n Deducting the unpaid balance of professional dues and forwarding it to the association when an employee terminates employment before the end of a contract.
n Dropping the first three years from the supplementary pay schedule and starting at what is currently designated as four to six years of experience for the starting base, a level Fandel said was the Lakes Conference average in 1999-2000.
n Changing the language under evaluation procedures for teachers and coaches to conform to new state requirements for peer review.
District business manager and board secretary Kate Woods said the district did not yet have a health insurance quote - something that would have an impact on the overall salary package.
The district will make its initial proposal 5:50 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 19.