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Board Report - September 10
Originally posted September 11, 2018
Board members accept Vision 2025 grant to help recruit, retain teachers
Board members unanimously accepted a Vision 2025 grant, called “Teach. Live. T-Town.” to assist in the recruiting, retention and training of teachers.
This money will be made available to the District annually for each of the next seven years. Union Public Schools and the Union Classroom Teachers Association have agreed to make available to teachers additional stipends and signing bonuses that are not classified under the current contract regarding extra duty stipends. Also included are funds that may be used for marketing purposes to help increase the district’s visibility.
These stipends and signing bonuses would be available over the seven years of this project. They include:
- Teachers hired for certain hard-to-fill positions in Special Education, Secondary Math, Secondary Science and Nursing will receive a $1,000 signing bonus payable on their first regularly scheduled pay date.
- Teachers receiving the signing bonus will be required to sign an agreement to return the signing bonus in its entirety should they leave the district within 12 months of their date of hire.
Mentor Teacher Stipend
- Teachers will provide support and guidance throughout the year to teachers with no previous experience.
- The Mentor Teacher will receive a $1,000 annual stipend per teacher they mentor (up to a limit of two).
- Should the Mentor Teacher be unable to complete the year, the stipend would be prorated.
Student Teacher Mentor Stipend
- Teachers who receive a student teacher to supervise will receive a $500 stipend.
- They wiII provide guidance and support to the student teacher and complete the paperwork required by the student's institution.
- Teachers may not have more than one student teacher at a time.
- Teachers who have current ESL certification will receive a onetime stipend of $500.
- Teachers, who obtain ESL Certification during the year will receive the onetime ESL stipend the following year.
- Teachers will have the opportunity to participate in the EL training program at no cost to the teacher. (This is training that helps prepare teachers for the ESL certification exam).
Health insurance premiums to remain unchanged
Board members approved recommendations for premium insurance rates for employees/retirees, COBRA participants and Board members at the same level as last year – which means employees will not see any cost increases.
“Union's self-insured plans continue to be competitive with the State's Health Choice High medical plan,” explained Jay Loegering, executive director of Human Resources. “Benefits for Union's self-insured PPO plan remain richer, and co-pays and deductibles will remain lower in many areas.”
For comparison, Union employees covering their family on Union’s medical plan pay $6,063.60 less annually in premiums than other districts in Oklahoma, and have a lower deductible and lower out of pocket costs, Loegering pointed out.
Board members accept bid to buy two activity buses
Board members accepted the bid of $121,172 for the purchase of two activity buses from Summit Bus, using bond dollars approved by voters.
These buses will not require a CDL driver, allowing teachers the opportunity to transport their students to events without the time constraints of bus routes. These buses will be the preferred vehicle to transport students in lieu of the activity vans.