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Lakewood School Board OKs New Teachers Contract

The new agreement — replacing the existing contract set to expire at the end of next school year — will save the district about $2 million per year through 2013-14.

In what is considered a big first step in belt-tightening for the cash-strapped , district officials have wrapped up negotiations with the teachers union.

And at a special meeting on Friday morning, the school board approved the contract with the Lakewood Teachers Association that will run through the 2013-2014 school year.

The new contract — replacing the existing one set to expire at the end of next school year — will save the district about $2 million per year, according to officials.

With the district looking to close an estimated $12.4 million budget deficit in 2015, the district’s labor unions agreed to reopen their contracts for negotiation.

Teachers accepted a 0 percent base pay increase in 2013-2014; they’ll pay 5 percent more for health care beginning in 2012-2013; and participate in a retirement incentive program in 2013-2014, according to a press release.

“It’s a done deal,” said Lakewood Superintendent Jeff Patterson. “We’re excited about having this contract, and at the same time we’re saving the district money.”

“We’ve been working in tandem (to also discuss) other budget cuts.”

LTA president Colleen Corrigan said in a prepared statement that the union understands the , and was willing to make some adjustments.  

“Lakewood's schools have been a source of pride for the community, the district, and, certainly, the teachers for many years,” she said. “So many students have benefited from the educational programs and opportunities offered in our schools …  We wanted to do what we could to minimize those cuts so that current as well as future students will be afforded the same opportunities.”

The district is also expected to renegotiate contracts with its two other labor unions — OAPSE 129 and OAPSE 134 — both representing the district’s support staff.

Patterson said he will share additional proposed cost-cutting measures — stemming from aimed at gathering data from residents — at Monday’s board of education meeting set for 7 p.m. at .

Chris Olsen May 19, 2012 at 04:35 PM
I wonder if administration took a pay cut and made similar sacrifices when they negotiated with the board ?
Steve May 19, 2012 at 08:48 PM
Being a Lakewood High Grad, is this the fuzzy math everyone is talking about? Let's see, 2 years of cuts for 2 million for each year = 4 million thru year 2014, but by 2015, the deficit will be 12.4 million. Now, how do they come up with 8.4 million in 2015 to balance the budget? I just don't get fuzzy math!!! They never taught that at Lakewood High School, now did they...Are they just kicking the can down the street to see where it lands???
Torri K May 21, 2012 at 04:52 AM
Steve did you read the article? It said in the article that this was "the first step" that there were going to be "other budget cuts" and they were going to "renegotiate contracts with two other labor unions" and that there were "additional proposed cost cutting measures." Some people just like to complain.
Michael Rice May 22, 2012 at 02:01 PM
Why don't the administrators and new director of the Lakewood Rec. take a pay cut? The Director of Recreation and HR, JimReitenbach, is already collecting a pension from his old job as Superintendent and his now making $113,000 to run the Rec and oversee HR. Give me a break. There are plenty of jobs and salaries that could be cut and his is a prime example. Why is it always the teachers losing money? They are the ones educating the children of Lakewood. New leadership is needed.

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