The pay for a starting North Platte school teacher will increase $420 this school year, to $32,900, the school board agreed Tuesday.
That amounts to a 1.3 percent increase.
The board left most of the newest contract with teachers the same as a year ago.
Teachers will continue to receive an automatic 5-percent pay raise each year, plus another 4-percent pay raise for every nine hours of higher education they obtain.
A veteran classroom teacher can earn as much as $69,419 a year, as well as another $1,000-$6,000 a year for overseeing extra-curricular activities such as detention, prom, music or athletics.
Teachers also receive $6,000 each as compensation toward their health insurance, and 10 sick days per year for illness or injury to them or in their immediate family. Sick days can accumulate to a total of 75.
One change was made to the number of days of paid “personal leave” teachers can take. The number of personal leave days were extended from two to three per year. In exchange, teachers agreed not to carry unused personal leave forward into future years.
Teachers also receive retirement benefits, but those are set by the state and not included in this agreement.
Human Resource Director Tami Eshleman said a comparison study was conducted to be sure that North Platte is paying the norm, and that teachers recently voted to approve the agreement.
School Board President Jim Paloucek recognized high school teacher Skip Altig, who has helped negotiate the agreements for eight years.
Altig has always shown integrity and put the best interests of students ahead of any disagreements during negotiations, Paloucek said.
“I want to give him some kudos for that,” Paloucek said.
The board voted to approve the agreement unanimously, 5-0, with no other discussion. Board member Justin Schwartz was absent.