Teachers/board continue negotiation talks

The teachers and the school board have yet to agree on a contract settlement. The teachers feel they took a below average settlement two years ago because of the financial uncertainties of the district. The board and negotiating team will meet Sunday night to see what they can come up with. See full story in Monday’s paper.

Comment about the DC Levy Being Passed (45 comments)
Comment about How levy money should be spent (8 comments)


  1. Dassel Grandma says:

    Here we go, the cash cow is backed up to the window and the teaching staff and administration are salivating with the additional money coming in!! Big raises on the horizon!!! I thought the additional levy money was going to be used for smaller class sizes and additional curriculum at the high school level (foreign languages, etc.). See what I mean about the Board being honest with the District’s taxpayers!!! I don’t believe I read anything about the levy being used to increase teachers’ salaries. No wonder the teachers haven’t signed their contracts – they were waiting for this money!!!

  2. Terry Moore says:

    Both the Board and the teachers need to think about this issue very carefully. If a contract that is perceived by the public to be excessive is negotiated I fear this will be the last levy that will ever be passed.

  3. dcmom says:

    School Board are you listening?

    The teachers and administration in this district are well compensated from what I know. Remind them during the negotiations that this levy barely passed. There are PLENTY of teachers out there to fill positions. The last figure that I was told was that there were approximately 200 applicants for every elementary teacher opening. I would guess that these applicants would accept the pay in this district the way that it is now. There should be no reason for them to recieve an increase in their pay when the rest of the working public has to get by without pay increases year after year.

    The teacher’s union has far too much power in this world. They need to learn themselves that sometimes you do not get everything you want. If this district is going to succeed we cannot bow down to pressure from a group of people that have only known what it is like in the schools. MOST of the teachers went to grade school through high school and then off to college only to return to school again. They have no idea what it is like for people with regular jobs. Production workers only get raises if their work is satisfactory and the company can afford it. This school district is that company and we cannot afford it!

    If the administration is ready to give back some of their pay to keep the teachers happy that might be a good start! After all the payroll at the school is already a major portion of the school budget.

    I was told that the levy was to be used to hire additional TEACHERS not increase the pay of the teachers or administration we already have. I was also promised that the administration would not be increased in the district.

    Were you lying to the public?

  4. Dassel Cokato teachers should be very careful. There are many other teachers who are eager to work here and willing to work at the current DC salary levels. (My son-in-law, for example.) If DC teachers demand too much, the school board can easily replace them

  5. Cokato resident says:

    First, let’s try to be a little patient here and let the negotiating process work a little.

    Second, let’s also recall that in the last round of negotiating, the administrative staff got a pretty good deal, while the classroom instructors got, well, squat. (How may of you know that the district pays the entire amount of the administrators health benefits, while the teachers get only a small portion paid?) I can completely understand how they were not happy with that outcome.

    Third, I agree with the other posters that all concerned must be very careful how this is both handled and portrayed.

  6. dcdad says:

    I think this whole blog situation is interesting. Here is Roz Kohls who is supposed to be a journalist for this paper and then she writes her opinion on this matter. Is this journalistic integrity? She just covered the negotiation process for the city of Dassel employees and thank goodness she didn’t share her opinion on that. I hope she doesn’t write an article on the teacher negotiations because she has already crossed the line with stating her opinion. Back to the city of Dassel negotiations—-it seems to me that they received a 4% increase in salary which is a little more than a cost of living but not excessive.
    Isn’t this whole negotiation thing with the teachers about that? Aren’t they just asking for a cost of living increase?

    And to the DC mom who said that all teachers have been in school and haven’t had any real life experience, I wonder don’t we choose what we do for a profession? I wonder if the teachers are all married to teachers or perhaps, they are married to some “real life people” as well?

    I agree. The school district needs to be frugal with funding. They should stick to what they said they would do in the levy literature. Wouldn’t the negotiations occur even if the levy didn’t pass? Are we making this a bigger deal than what it is? Is there a settlement? Or, is it just okay to jump to conclusions and consider that all people must be greedy and that all people especially teachers want more than others?

    Disappointed in Dassel!

  7. a REAL cokato person says:

    YES, negotiations would go on if the levy didn’t pass, and YES, you are making a bigger deal than it is. I think some of you need to reread what the levy will be used for, and quit acusing and jumping on the teachers for a raise they are asking for. AND for you DC-MOM, why don’t you spend a day in a classroom and see what these professional teachers do who have ONLY gone to school and don’t have “regular jobs”. You are right it’s not a “regular job” it’s MUCH more than that.

  8. Cokato resident says:

    I feel as though people are getting upset about something that would have happened with or without the levy passing. Teachers would still be negotiating even if the lexy didn’t pass. Each year the cost of living grows, therefore an increase in pay whether your a teacher or in any other profession is needed in order to keep up with today’s living expenses. Why should teachers not receive a raise? I believe that most other jobs outside of education receive raises.

  9. dcmom says:

    I am constantly amazed that people that participate in an activity that don’t understand that activity.

    A blog is a means where a person can express an opinion or concern and have an online discussion with another faceless person. I am just stating the way that I feel about a certain subject when I blog. It may not be popular with all people. But it is MY opinion and nothing else. You do not have to agree. That is what makes blogs work the best. If you irritate or bring up a viewpoint that others do not share it creates a dialog where people will then discuss why they disagree. It does not make person number A better than person number B. They just have different view points and therefore a different perspective on the issue.

    To attack a person directly like what was just done to Roz is wrong. To DCDAD: I disagree with you on the Roz issue. Do you really believe that just because she works for the paper she is not intitled to her own opinion? She is a person just like you and I. I believe that as long as she does not inject her personal opinion in print or in an online STORY she is doing her job. I think Roz can write whatever she wants in a blog, because that is not part of her job. A blog is a means to express an opinion. I hope that Roz gets her wish and that her son in law gets a job in this school district if the teachers are difficult and won’t accept what the school board offers. The school board I assume will do what they can to reach an agreement with the teachers. I just hope that it is fair to the taxpayers as well.

    I believe that protocol on a blog should be that you can address a person and tell them that you do not agree with their viewpoint and why. (Though I am not positive about that, that is why everything you write to the ED is put through a moderator first.)

    I am as guilty as the next person about wanting to think that I am the only person who knows anything (I am working on not being like this) and I frequently break this protocol because it is very difficult not to. FOR THOSE THAT I HAVE DONE THIS TO I APOLOGIZE. I am going to try very hard in the future to keep myself from attacking a person directly. I hope others will do the same.

  10. Exasperated says:

    Just a reply to dcmom.

    You are right, everybody is entitled to my opinion.

    However, here is a fact. “A” and “B” are letters, not numbers.

  11. dcmom says:

    I stand corrected, A and B are letters not numbers.

    PS: I never said I was perfect! If you check the other blogs there are also spelling and gramatical errors. Why did you feel the need to pick on mine in particular? Is it just that you don’t like my opinions perhaps?

    Dassel Grandma- you and I are finally agreeing on something! Way to go……….couldn’t have said it better myself. Especially since I seem to have a target on my back, just because I may not share the same opinion as someone else.

  12. Dassel Grandma says:

    The education staff at DC was very astute in their decision not to negotiate a contract until after the levy referendum date. Even the DC Enterprise is quoted as “the staff at the DC School District was breathing a sigh of relief” the day after the election. Why was that? They were breathing a sigh of relief because now they have the leverage to negotiate for a higher contract. After all, the school district will now be the recipient of more money that supposedly was targeted by the taxpayers for smaller classes, new textbooks, more foreign language choices for our high school students, and upgraded technology. It was passed after all “for the kids.” However, I don’t remember reading that this levy money would be used to increase teachers’ salaries but then if you think about it, they were all breathing a sigh of relief because now they know they are in a position to demand higher salaries. The money is there. Unfortunately, we now need to “trust” our school board to do the “honest” thing, and not look at this money as a way to give the teaching staff unrealistic increased salaries. I do not work in a position that allows me to demand a higher salary on an annual basis. If I wanted to get a higher salary I would have to move to the metro area. My position in the metro area would command a salary approximately $30,000.00 more than what I presently make. Yes, there is a big, big difference. And, I think our Board needs to make the teaching staff understand that this is rural Minnesota. If they want the high buck salaries of the metro area, they need to make the move and work in those school districts. I am not privvy to what the staff is requesting, but I imagine that increased health care benefits are high on the list. Here too, health care benefits are benefits that are not mandatory to any contract. Just ask the UAW workers. Most of those folks have lost health care benefits entirely. We are all living on the edge of those benefits. The staff will need to make the decision as to what is important to them – better health care benefits or higher salaries. I don’t think the school district can afford both. And, if the school board gave the administration the benefit of paying 100% of their health care insurance costs, then we had better look at replacing the Board, one by one, as their terms come up for re-election. That kind of benefit in this day and age is almost unheard of. The DC School District is not a Fortune 500 business, and we cannot allow this type of benefit for a few employees. The Board has to keep in mind that most taxpayers in this school district do not have a well of $$ in our back yards, so please, Board of Directors, negotiate a contract that everybody can live with!!! Otherwise, I think you may find yourselves booted out at the end of your terms!!

  13. Exasperated says:

    Another fact check.

    Technically DC Grandma, the Dassel-Cokato School District is a metro school. It is located in Wright County.

    Additionally, according to information from other local teaching contracts the salaries at DC are lower than Litchfield, which really is not a metro school. The levels are lower than Annandale. The levels are very similar to HLWW. Some people on this blog would pass out if they saw what teachers at New London Spicer were being paid. The salary table is 3-4 thousand higher than teachers at D-C. Becker Minnesota has salaries that can be at time 6 thousand higher than teachers at D-C. Are these towns rural Minnesota? D-C then must be really really rural. Must be something like the idea of two Americas.

  14. Cokato resident says:

    Exasperated–I am not totally disagreeing with you here, just offering some other factoids (which if you ask teenagers, is a word).

    Becker is definitely not rural. But one advantage it has is the power plant, which subsidizes the household tax rates in that district. NLS is definitely rural, but their district also includes some pretty pricey real estate around the Green Lake area. So again, their tax base is quite different from DCs.

    You are right in that D-C is a metro–or exurban–district. But for so many people, esp. those who grew up here, the existence of endless fields of corn and soybeans dictates that we have to be rural district. But when you look at our demographics, esp. those who commute to the cities for employment, a different picture emerges.

    Let’s go back to one specific issue: the health benefits for admin compared to classroom instructors and ask youselves this question–is this a fair arrangement?

  15. dcemployee says:

    To those of you who are saying “the school district is breathing a sigh of relief”: maybe we are breathing a sigh of relief because we know that we will not have to worry IF we are going to have a job next year!! Who said anything about the teachers wanting an extravagant raise? Everyone is jumping to the conclusion that our employee’s are greedy people!! These same “greedy people” are teaching your kids and/or your grandchildren. If you are so against the district employee’s getting raises, try going to another district. The same thing will happen there! How come city employee’s can get a 4% raise and no one seems to bat an eye. But when district employee’s are NEGOTIATING raises, people get all upset and think that these employee’s DON’T deserve raises. Why don’t you just wait to see what happens, before you jump to the conclusion that our district employee’s are greedy people, going after your money!!

  16. Exasperated says:


    Just to confirm what I thought was painfully obvious, no, I don’t agree with your opinion.

  17. Person who has been on both sides says:

    I am concerned about the cynicism expressed about our teachers. The 1st entry from the Dassel Grandma states that the administration and teachers “are salivating over the additional money coming in” implies that they are the ones that benefit from the levy money. WOW!!!! I am sorry that someone or numerous people have given you that impression about teachers. If that is what you truly feel about teachers, then perhaps you should come in and observe the teachers while they are teaching or check the parking lots of the school late in the evenings or on weekends. What you will find are numerous teachers at any given time, who are giving their time (and often their money) to help their students learn the most that they can and in the best way they can. To imply that teachers are being selfish or greedy to ask for an “increase” in pay- which would have been done regardless of whether the levy passed or not- is inaccurate and unfair.

    Since the cost of living (including health care, gas, labor costs, etc.) is going up, why is it unreasonable for a teacher to ask for compensation that is proportionate to the aforementioned increases? Also (as was pointed out by several people in this blog), it is important to remember that teachers took a very minimal pay increase in the last negotiations, which demonstrated the teachers’ understanding of the situation.

    Our teachers our very qualified and are some of the best. DC MOM pointed out that the teachers should be happy because they have a job considering the 200 applicants for each position that open up. Think about this statement in the following way:
    If there are 200 applicants for each job, then DC did well for our kids because they hired the best out of 200 for each position. I assure you, all teachers are not created equal and the ones that teach here were hired because they were the best out the applicants. DC MOM also enters a slippery slope by comparing jobs and implying that teachers are in some way “closed off” to the real world. She mentioned production jobs and how their raises are based on their productivity. Is she implying that she or production workers would keep working tirelessly if their efforts weren’t recognized and rewarded when possible? Is it fair that we ask teachers to educate and guide our kids and our future, but pay them less than many other jobs? I for one am tired of paying labor bills of $50-$100 an hour when I am not making anywhere near that for an equally important skill. I don’t think the teachers want or expect anything unreasonable, but they do want to at least keep up with the rising costs of goods and services (along with being valued and appreciated like any other professional), so ultimately they don’t lose pay each year as these goods and services continue to increase in price.

    Finally, the reason teachers breathed a sigh of relief when the levy was passed was because they have seen how the recent cuts have affected the students, teachers, and the community. They were pleased because they knew that they shouldn’t have to cut anymore classes and should be able to add classes to enrich the educational opportunities of the kids. How many of you have witnessed the first hand impact of finding something that you are interested in and having the opportunity to explore those interests? I have and I have seen how kids light up and find a purpose when they are exposed to new things that they never knew that they had talents in. I’ll be the first to admit that this sounds romantic, but the impact is dramatic. What if those opportunities weren’t there? I believe (as do those who supported the levy) that our world would be worse off and we have a responsibility to our kids and our community to provide these opportunities whenever possible. The school board did promise that some of the funds would go for increased class offerings and smaller class sizes, so remember to support the hiring of additional teachers and additional course offerings when they are proposed.

  18. Dassel Grandma says:

    Increased salaries, etc. in any profession will never keep up with the increased costs of heating our homes, gassing up our cars (so that we can go to work to make $$ to pay the bills), increased health insurance premiums, increased taxes, etc. I consider myself to be extremely conservative perhaps even to the detriment of my lifestyle. However, when the time comes for my retirement (and the way things are going in our country I am not sure if that time will ever come), I would not want to be burden on the younger generation. This is the reason behind my conservative view points. It isn’t that I wouldn’t want to give the teaching staff a higher raise (my goodness they deserve it because beyond teaching they also are nurses, social workers, etc.). You are all correct in the fact that teaching is not a 8-4 job. Many teachers in our former school district were available to assist our children should the need arrive especially with the math and science classes. There were many mornings our kids left early to meet with their teachers before 7:00 A.M. for the extra help they requested. On the other hand there were also teachers who left the building at 3:00 P.M. – that was quitting time (and they had no desire to come in early to meet with students). I am all for giving those teachers who teach Math and Science classes a better salary because they need to know their subjects very well and they are teaching the cream of the classes. They deserve to be rewarded!! However, my children during their college years knew students who started college with the dream of getting an engineering degree or a biology (pre-med) or a math degree, and after seeing (or failing) how difficult those classes were, they opted for an “education degree.” How many of those “education degrees” end up with a teaching position that was a “second option” and the passion for teaching just isn’t there? Do these teachers deserve the same salary as those who are willing to go beyond what is expected of them as teachers?

    By the way, what type of salary increase are the DC teachers requesting?

  19. Cokato MOM says:

    Unbelievable!!! I cannot belive what I am reading. It amazes me how much ignorance this community has. Teachers are human! Do you not think that they read your statements? We do not all share the same beliefs or opinions, but lets show some compassion. After reading this blog, I am ready to put our house on the market. I do not want my children exposed to such pessamistic views of education. I may not agree with every decision the DC school board makes, but I do know that the teachers in this distric are top notch! They truly do care about the success of our students. In my opinion, teachers are worth every penny they earn. Of course there is a bad apple in every bunch, but those are to be dealt with on an individual basis by the administration. I do feel that teachers should be rewarded for their success. And, trust me, it isn’t only math and science teachers who have the greatest impact on students. My most influential teacher, who taught me to believe in myself, was my Social Studies teacher. School isn’t always about learning math and science, althought they are important to life. Education is about learning life. Many of life’s lessons are not taught in the classroom. Some are on the basketball court, speech team, or our place of worship. School’s are one portion to our well being. We need to support them. Let’s not harass our teachers for wanting an increase in pay to keep up with the standard of living. They have families too. Remember when you critisize a teacher, you affect their entire family. Again, we are all human. We need to work together. We need to support or educators as they are the one’s supporting our children’s success in life. Do we really know what type of increase the teacher’s union is asking for? No, but I don’t think that they are asking for more than what they deserve, and I know they understand the concern of the community. They are not being greedy, they are trying to support their families. Remember, they are human too. No one needs to be criticized like they are. Again, we may not always agree with decisions made, but we need to work together to get it right! I truly hope that the teachers union gets what they deserve! Thank you for all you do!

  20. DC Grad says:

    The lack of support for educators bothers me. I received a pretty good education at Dassel-Cokato. I graduated from high school 6 years ago, and will be graduating with a 4-year accounting degree in the spring. I came from a large, lower income family. I had some great teachers…but best of all, I had teachers that inspired me and now I have the opportunity to make my life better for my children than I had growing up.

    Education is the future…and it opens a lot of doors…it gives children hope…

    I hope the next generation of children graduating from D/C will have good, hard working, inspiring teachers, that give them opportunity for future success. If you don’t think teachers deserve money, you should at least support them for what they do for our children.

  21. Dassel Grandma says:

    Congratulations DC Grad – this is a major milestone in your life. I wish you well in your job search, and again, congratulations to you if you have already secured one!!! Congratulations, too, to your parents for their support in making sure that you have obtained a college degree. In this country education is power, and most parents want more for their children than what they had growing up. Obviously you are headed in the right direction!! It would be interesting to hear from you 10-15 years from now, after you have paid off those student loans, after you are married, after you have a home of your own, after you have children of your own and after you pay approximately 50-60% of your annual salary into taxes (all forms) that you will still support increased taxes. There isn’t much left for our family to spend on us after payment of all those taxes, thus the reason for the lack of support of education levies, etc. That is the one form of taxation that at least we can vote on!! Our governmental boards need to be careful regarding those increased taxes – there will be empty homes around the area because the residents simply may not be able to afford the real estate taxes.

  22. CheriLynn says:

    Opinions and differences make our world an interesting place to say the least.

    My wish is that both sides of the negotiation settle on a fair contract.

    And as some have stated prior to this post- Bravo for Teachers! They truely are molders of the future. Ask a successful person who it was that inspired them and other than a family member, I bet the majority would state it was a teacher!

  23. DC Grad says:

    Responding to Dassel Grandma: I actually already have two children of my own, I was a single mom for 3 years before getting married 1 1/2 years ago. Do I know how hard it is to support a family? Absolutely! I struggled very hard for a few years. I feel like I struggled more than anyone I know, but it has made me who I am today.

    The statistics show that the children of most single parents end up in poverty. How did I keep my kids and myself for being a statistic? Education! I can’t tell you how much it has empowered me and given me so much hope for the future. I agree I am fortunate that my parents support education, and although they didn’t go to much schooling past high school, they knew it was important for this generation of children to survive in a competitive economy.

    I guess the question we have to answer is…how do we support an education system so it provides the most benefit to everyone in the community? Money is a factor, but definitely not the only way to support our education system.

    I think the easiest thing we can do it show support for our teachers, not in the form of money, but verbally expressing our appreciation. Also, volunteering in the schools and getting involved. It’s disappointing to see people bashing the jobs of teachers when they are so incredibly vital to our children’s future.

    I agree that checks and balances need to be put in place for all government subsidized organizations, including public schools. They need to be accountable for their spending habits. However, it would be silly to assume that all of the teachers out there are teaching because they love to teach and they would do it for free. I guess in a perfect world, we would all want to make the world a better place with no monetary compensation.

    So, how do we teach our children?

    What about the children from poor families…Their parents didn’t have access to opportunities, and didn’t pursue higher education. Do you repeat the cycle and keep opportunities away from those kids? Often, education (good teachers!!!) gives those kids hope.

    What about the gifted and talented children who could be our nations next doctors, teachers, accountants, and lawyers? Do we not offer the programs in our public schools that would encourage them to reach for the starts? Programs for gifted and talented students also requires more funding.

  24. dcmom says:

    This article should show why I don’t believe that teachers across the board should be entitled to a raise every year just because they are part of a union.

    Education Week Magazine Slams Minn. Teaching
    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) ― An annual report card from Education Week magazine gave Minnesota low marks for its teaching quality and said the state’s education spending was middle-of-the-pack.

    The group’s “Quality Counts” annual report on K-12 education gave Minnesota a D+ for how well the state is improving its teaching. In that category, the state placed 39th out of 50 states and the District of Columbia.

    The low score came mostly from the state’s lack of various teaching programs and effectiveness measures that other state’s have. For example, the state was docked for lacking a statewide program to reduce class sizes.

    Minnesota ranked 22nd in terms of state funding for schools and how the money is divided out.

    On the upside, the report showed that Minnesota student’s chances for success based on education and family factors were far better than students in most other states. In that category, Minnesota got a B+, and ranked seventh nationwide.

    Education Commissioner Alice Seagren said the report will prompt more discussion of ways to improve teaching and attract more highly qualified people to the profession.

    “This gives us an opportunity to really examine our policies in Minnesota,” she said.

    Seagren noted the state already has policies to improve math and science teaching and to link teacher pay to merit.

    “We can look at this report and say, ‘What are we doing and how can we grow those things?”‘ Seagren said.

  25. TerryMoore says:

    dcmom — I believe you have misread the article you posted. This was a study about the state policies and not about the individuals who are doing the teaching.

    If you look at the statements “The low score came mostly from the state’s lack of various teaching programs and effectiveness measures that other state’s have. For example, the state was docked for lacking a statewide program to reduce class sizes.” You will realize that the study shows that the state policies are not supportive of the teachers and that is where the low marks come from.

    The statement “On the upside, the report showed that Minnesota student’s chances for success based on education and family factors were far better than students in most other states. In that category, Minnesota got a B+, and ranked seventh nationwide.” Tells me that the teachers and parents are doing a very good job in our state.

  26. DCMom says:

    Terry- I find it pretty hard to misunderstand the statement

    “An annual report card from Education Week magazine gave Minnesota low marks for its TEACHING QUALITY and said the state’s education spending was middle-of-the-pack.”

    Teaching quality? Mmmm-to me that says something on the work the teachers are doing. Now that may be closely tied with the amount of education spending, but the fact remains that there had to have been some lacking in the teaching somewhere. Ultimately it is the teachers that are suppose to perform, that is what they are paid for, to teach the children.

    Otherwise why would the head of the education system say this? Education Commissioner Alice Seagren said the report will prompt more discussion of ways to IMPROVE TEACHING and ATTRACT MORE HIGHLY QUALIFIED PEOPLE TO THE PROFESSION.
    This gives us an opportunity to really examine our policies in Minnesota,” she said.
    Seagren noted the state already has policies to improve math and science teaching and to link teacher pay to merit.

    Her comment on linking teacher pay to merit is all that I am asking for. You should not be entitled to a raise simply because you are a member of a union. Your pay should be based on the work that you do.
    Not just an across the board raise for everyone.

    Just my thoughts. No one has to like my thoughts but me.

  27. TerryMoore says:

    DCMom — The only problem that I have is how do you define “linking pay to merit”? You are not dealing with increases in sales, output or any of the normal measurements used in business. You are dealing with kids who are all different and come from different backrounds and environments.

    How can you possibly measure merit if one teacher has a class of normal, adjusted kids who all pass a test versus a teacher how has a class of (sorry to be blunt) stupid kids from broken homes who all fail the test?

    What criteria can you use that is fair and objective? I agree that I would like to link pay with results or merit but I find it almost impossible to determine how to truly measure and rate teachers objectively.

  28. DCMom says:

    I have to agree that finding the criteria to rate the teachers on is the sticking point. There should be some testing of the students or surveys from the parents that could be utilized to show who the people believe are doing a good job.

    My children have had some fabulous teachers that went over and beyond for the students in their classes and then there have been some horror stories on how some of the teachers have taught. (the worst one in particular left the district—yee hah)

    Right now the average pay for a teacher in this district is $47,743. If you take that pay and divide it over the nine months that most actually work; then take that monthly figure and take it times twelve months the average yearly salary equals $63,657.33. That is a nice paycheck and now they will get a 4% raise on that. They will be making approximately 1.75 times what I make in a year working full time 40 hours a week, 49 weeks a year (I have earned 3 weeks vacation time). Even though my boss acknowledges that I deserve a raise, the funds are not there so I won’t be recieving one this year. Maybe that will help you understand my frustration on them automatically getting a raise. I even read some articles that said the union estimated that the average raise that the teachers would get on their contracts was 2.7% or something like that as that is what the cost of living went up this last year. Seems like they should be very happy with the contract that the board gave them.

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