K-M, teacher’s union reach contract agreement
Kasson-Mantorville school board members and the district’s teachers union, K-M Education Minnesota, agreed March 16 on contract language with five new district teachers, avoiding arbitration regarding contract grievances.
K-M’s contract language had stipulated that credit up to the 10th year step on a teacher’s salary schedule shall be given for previous outside public school teaching experience in the duly-accredited school upon initial employment.
The grievants wished to change the intent of the language from “up to” to “shall,” which would grant all their experience from working within their previous public or private school districts.
And, under a contract plan urged by Education Minnesota, a teacher with experience elsewhere might expect to be placed on corresponding step of the salary scale in the K-M district.
The district, in recent negotiations and in agreement with KMEM, had agreed to a new contract which eliminated the first five steps of the salary schedule, meaning steps on the grid no longer represented years of service.
“We put some language in that said teachers shall be paid by a calculation that gives them their years of service outside the community, minus the five years (of experience). So they’re making the same amount of money that the teachers within the district will make,” K-M superintendent Mark Matuska said Monday. “So I think it was a great compromise on both sides. They felt very comfortable with it and so did the board members.”
“It’s always tough to almost have the grievance come to arbitration,” KMEM co-president Travis Robertson said. “But as we all worked together, both sides came up with a great agreement that both sides could live with, and move forward here in a positive direction.”
In other business, the school district has finalized an agreement with KMTelecom, giving the Kasson communications business exclusive naming rights to K-M’s football and soccer complex. The site is now named KMTelecom Stadium.
KMTelecom will donate $20,000 toward construction of a new press box on the north side of the stadium, and will split the cost of signage on the press box with the school district.