The Keokuk School District and the Keokuk Education Association are negotiating teacher salaries despite the two sides already having a contract in place for the 2017/2018 school year.
The current employment agreement, which runs through June 30, 2018, includes a 3.1% increase in total compensation for teachers during this school year and a 3.1% increase for 2017/2018.
Heidi Harness, who is the school district’s business manager, said total compensation can include salaries and the money paid by the district for insurance premiums or IPERS (retirement).
A clause, though, in the contract allowed for compensation to be re-negotiated if the Iowa Legislature set state aid lower than 2% or higher than 6%. Lawmakers settled on roughly 1%, prompting the contract talks.
The teachers are seeking a 2% increase in the base pay to more than $34,000. They also want raises based on experience and education.
The district’s initial offer is a 1% increase in total compensation. Harness said that would work out to about $120,000, much of which could be accounted for by the school paying more for insurance premiums.
No other language will be negotiated. Future talks will take place behind closed doors.