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INDIANA: School board reaches deal with support staff

by on February 12, 2014 10:59 AM

An early labor accord has been reached between Indiana Area School District and its support workers’ union, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.

The school board Monday approved a four-year contract to take effect July 1, which raises the base pay for new employees by $3 per hour and provides raises of 50 cents an hour in each year of the contract.

The agreement covers about 110 employees. Starting wages for various secretarial, custodial and other positions range from $8 to $13 an hour and will rise to $11 to $16, said Business Manager Jared Cronauer.

The board continues to negotiate with Indiana Area Education Association, whose contract also expires June 30.

In other business Monday, the board:

• Approved 2014 summer school programs including a “credit recovery” program for senior high students to make up failed classes at a cost of $5,100; a “credit advancement” program for senior high students to earn additional class credits at a cost of $13,000; and a program for junior high students to make up for failing grades at a cost of $15,000.

District Superintendent Dale Kirsch called the costs “high side” estimates that will depend on the number of students who participate. Student tuition rates, to be set later, will defray the costs.

“The junior high (program) is new; we haven’t had that since the ARIN summer school program ended a few years ago,” Kirsch said. “It’s estimated a little higher because there is more time on site, as opposed to the (senior high) program.”

• Approved a field trip by 38 secondary English Festival students and four adults to Washington, D.C., on Feb. 21 at a cost to the district of $1,950 for transportation and $180 for substitute teachers.

• Approved the Indiana Area Senior High School marching band to plan for a trip from Dec. 28 to Jan. 2 to Tempe, Ariz., and Phoenix, to participate in the Fiesta Bowl parade, at undetermined costs for transportation to and from Pittsburgh International Airport.

• Approved a leave of absence for elementary teacher Ashley Rosendale from March 28 to May 21.

Chauncey Ross is the Gazette’s fixture at Indiana Area and Homer-Center school board meetings, has been seen with pen and notepad in area police stations and courts, and is something of an Open Records Act and Sunshine Law advocate. He also manages the Gazette’s websites and answers your questions about them.
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