OGDENSBURG - With more than 40 teaching positions lost at the Ogdensburg City School District in the past five years, the head of the Ogdensburg Education Association is calling out district administrative officials for taking raises.
Education Association President David G. Price said this years 3.75 percent pay increase to administrative officials is the result of a process heavily stacked in favor of the administration.
My concern is that the scale always tips toward administrators and away from teachers, he said.
At a board of education meeting on Aug. 6, the board approved 3.75 percent raises for the districts principals, secretaries, superintendent and assistant superintendent. Under a three-year agreement with the districts supervisory unit, administrators will get no raise next year and a 2.75 percent increase the third year.
My opinion would simply be that the board has solved its budget problems, and we look forward to seeing the same raises in our upcoming teacher contracts, Mr. Price said.
Board President Frederick P. Bean said Mr. Prices comments show that the union is ready to go into negotiations.
Teacher contracts expire in June, and the administration and teachers union will being negotiations this fall.
We have not solved our budget problems, Mr. Bean said. I anticipate next year will be worse.
Mr. Bean said even with the districts financial problems, the district was still able to dole out a 3.75 percent raise to teachers this year.
If you take the overall cost, it cost a lot more to give the teachers a raise, said Mr. Bean.
Mr. Price said, We received wage increases in exchange for insurance contributions.
Prior to this year, teachers were not responsible for health insurance contributions. Mr. Bean said teachers are paying roughly 5 percent, compared to administrative officials who are paying 12 percent.
Mr. Bean also said a pay freeze will take effect for 2013-2014 for principals, the superintendent and assistant superintendent. The freeze does not include secretaries who are part of the supervisory unit.
The pay freeze will take place even while administrative officials see their health insurance contributions rise to 13 percent, Mr. Bean said.
The truth is even if we had not given them a raise it would not have solved our problem, Mr. Bean said.
I really do agree with people getting raises, according to Mr. Price, but when it comes on the backs of people losing their jobs, then thats a shame.