DGKN staff report
DALTON School staff will see an increase of 2 percent in base salary per year in a new three-year contract.
The Dalton Local Board of Education and the Dalton Local Education Association reached the agreement, which was approved at Monday’s school board meeting.
“While the Board recognizes these are difficult times, we believe this is a fair agreement and underscores our effort in making our compensation plan a priority,” according to a news release from the school board. “Importantly, the District’s current financial forecast is healthy and the negotiated increase in expenses is aligned.”
The news release notes that staff members over the last decade received annual increases of 1 percent on average, or no raise. Compared with other Wayne County teachers, Dalton staff is low in the pay scales, the release states.
“The Dalton Local Education Association is glad to have the contract approved by the board,” Sara Browske, DLEA president and fifth-grade ELA teacher, wrote in an email. “We want to keep the focus on getting back to teaching in the fall.”
During the COVID-19 pandemic, staff members have gone above and beyond and proven they are the school district’s most valued resource, the news release continues.
“They put our children and their education first,” the news release states. “During the closure this past spring, teachers were connecting with students through different formats such as Google Meet, Google Voice, and email to provide instruction and support. Staff members would meet families in parking lots so the students could get the extra support they needed to learn. Staff members were working hard to ensure the nutritional needs of our students were met by providing free breakfasts and lunches during the closure (and this will continue during the summer). We also had staff members driving throughout the District delivering breakfasts, lunches, and school work to those families who could not come to the schools or go online.”
Staff members diligently disinfected buildings to ensure they stayed clean and virus-free, the news release states. District administration and administrative assistants worked to coordinate efforts and communicate with families and community members.
“The Board of Education would like to thank the staff for their hard work, dedication, and support,” the news release states. “We look forward to a bright future for the Dalton Local School District.”