Pay hikes OK’d for teachers, administrators

The Salem school board approved a new two-year contract with the teachers’ union and new three-year contracts with several administrators Monday, all with small wage increases.

“This is going to keep us about even, with what members are taking home,” Salem Education Association President Matt Ziegler said when contacted by phone.

The new SEA deal which takes effect Sept. 1 and expires Aug. 31, 2016 calls for increases in the base salary of 1.5 percent in the first year and 1 percent in the second year. In the first year, the beginning annual salary for a teacher with a bachelor’s degree will be just under $30,000. In the second year, it will go to just over $30,000 annually.

Ziegler explained that changes in state law regarding the state teachers retirement system mean that teachers will see increases each year in the percentage they have to contribute toward their retirement. The percentage amount increased to 11 percent this year and will go to 12 percent next year, with the amount jumping to 14 percent the following year.

There was no change in the percentage teachers will pay for their health insurance premiums, which totals 8 percent per month of the premium cost, but the dollar amounts are expected to increase as the cost of the premium increases, according to Treasurer Jim Wilson.

Both sides said the negotiation process between the administration and board and the teachers’ union went smoothly. The current contract doesn’t expire until Aug. 31. They started talking in May and wrapped up the process rather quickly. The vote by the 130 members of the SEA was unanimous.

“Everybody seemed to have a common goal,” Superintendent Dr. Joseph Shivers said after the meeting.

Ziegler offered thanks on behalf of the SEA to both Shivers and the Salem Board of Education for their hard work and cooperation in coming to an agreement.

“We’re looking forward to the start of the next school year and continuing to make Salem City Schools an excellent place for students to receive a quality education,” he said.

The board also approved new three-year contracts for several administrators which included wage increases of about 1.5 percent each year. The last time some of the administrators had their contracts renewed, many saw pay freezes and higher health insurance premiums. The news contracts take effect Aug. 1 and expire July 31, 2017.

The administrators and their wages for each of the three years include:

– Cathy Sanor, Director of Federal Programs, $87,218, $88,527 and $89,855.

– Cindy Viscounte, Reilly Principal, $80,997, $82,211 and $83,445.

– Lisa Whitacre, Southeast Principal, $83,467, $84,719 and $85,990.

– Ken Hardy, Maintenance Supervisor, $67,534, $68,547 and $69,575.

– Tim Roller, Technology Director, $72,741, $73,832 and $74,940.

Some titles also changed for a couple of administrators, along with their duties, with their salaries increased but staying the same for each of the three years of their contracts. Sean Kirkland was named high school/junior high principal during a special meeting last month, with a salary of $89,000 per year. He had previously served as the junior high principal and will cover both positions since Shivers moved up to superintendent from his post as high school principal. Hank Brock, former Dean of Students, will serve as Salem High School/Junior High associate principal at a salary of $70,000 per year for each of the three years. His contract was approved Monday.

Wilson had his new contract as treasurer approved for three years for $75,000 each year.

In other personnel matters, non-teaching continuous contracts approved for one year included EMIS coordinator Darlene Farino, $43,216; and treasurer’s office employees Sue Kyser, $34,222; Lori May, $35,130; and Marjorie Zeigler, $30,827. Bus mechanic Gary Bayda received a limited one-year contract for $36,540.

For the Hannah E. Mullins School of Practical Nursing, Deb Baker received a one-year non-teaching continuous contract for $26,000 while Deanne Russell received a limited one-year deal for a rate of $10 per hour.

The board also approved John Shuster as varsity soccer coach, accepted the resignation of Matt Freeman as head soccer coach, accepted the resignation of Niccole Nichols as Title I teacher at Buckeye, approved a continuing contract for teacher Amy Orville, approved Megan Ellis as high school guidance counselor, named Raymond Wagner as a certified substitute, Tara Fryfogle as a classified substitute, approved Lanette Elasavich for summer bus route duties, approved Sarah Burtnett as summer school teacher at Reilly and Carol Brown and Gina Powell as substitute teachers. Megan Gustavel was paid $75 as trainer for the district track meet held in Salem, with the amount coming from the Ohio High School Athletic Association.

A contract for overseeing the cafeteria was approved again for The Nutrition Group, with no price increases for breakfast or lunch for the next school year.

Donations accepted were fabric draping and hardware for graduation ceremonies from Bob and Linda Sebo and 81 copies of the book “The Missing Semester” from Hunter Associates.