Bay County Teachers Union talks pay raises

News

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — In Florida, county school boards are responsible for negotiating contracts with local teacher unions, and those contracts spell out how much teachers get paid. 

But the legislature and the governor play a key role in deciding how much money school districts can spend overall.

In Bay County, negotiations between the union and the district are ongoing.

The Teachers Union of Bay County and the school district are talking money, specifically raises for teachers.

Both sides agree teachers deserve more money, the disagreement is how much more.

Bay District Schools’ Human Resources Executive Director, Shirley Baker says the amount is what’s under negotiation.

“I think what we agree is we need to five teachers a raise, they work really hard and we’re in agreement that we need to give a raise. Where we are in disagreement is how much that raise is going to be because we want to be fiscally responsible and we have to count on our recurring dollars,” said Baker.

The raise would impact each teacher in the county directly.

“It’ll take effect this year and will be retroactive to the beginning of the year. Basically they will get an amount for the time they’ve already worked, and then their paycheck will reflect their raise going forward,” said Baker.

There’s also negotiations for the way athletic coaches who aren’t teachers are hired.

“In the current contract, if a teacher at the school does not want to coach for a certain sport then we have to advertise out of the school. And if we want to hire someone that is not a teacher, we have to get union approval for that,” said Baker.

The districts recommendation is that the principal decide the best candidate for that position, whether they are a teacher or not. Negotiations are expected to last a couple of more weeks.

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