New contracts approved for teachers and support staff

Skip Schulz/For the Gazette Ontonagon Area School District Superintendent/Principal Jim Bobula (left) goes over the new Teachers Contract and Support Staff Contract with the School Board.

ONTONAGON — The Ontonagon Area School District (OASD) School Board approved a new contract for both teachers and support staff at its meeting on Tuesday.

The two contracts received unanimous board approval.

Board Member Tammy Strasser, who made the motion to approve the contracts, stated that contract negotiations between both staffs were “cordial.”

“The negotiations the last two years has been cordial,” said OASD President, Dean Juntunen.

While there will be no salary increase for the teachers, the years of service will be reinstated. As a teacher served the district more years, they would go to a different salary. This process was frozen in the past but with the new teachers’ contract, it has been reinstated.

“We had a considerable amount of changes in the language of the contracts,” said OASD Superintendent/Principal Jim Bobula.

The board also approved the rate for substitute teachers, which also has no increase in pay. The daily pay will be $78.75 per day and $119 per day after 10 consecutive days. Substitute support staff will be paid $9.25/hour. Substitute bus drivers will be paid $13.00/hour.

With the approval of the second and final reading of both the Elementary and Jr/Sr High School handbooks, they were approved. Unlike in the past where only a limited amount of higher-performing students were acknowledged, this year the OASD is going to acknowledge all the students that meet a 3.50 grade point average or higher to graduate with honors.

On the subject of student performance, the district is going to utilize Eidex Analytics to measure student growth on local and Michigan assessments. This private company will also look at student attendance and behavior data.

“Data pertaining directly to teacher evaluations will also be configured in the Eidex system,” Bobula stated.

Through a professional development grant, OASD will be sending three staff members to the Horizons Administration Training Cohort. This is sponsored by Michigan Association of School Administrators and will start in September.

“Attendees have and will have the ability to gain administrative certification, and/or central office Endorsements,” according to Bobula.

It was at the end of the meeting that Bobula stated, “I want to give kudos to our entire staff, students, and community. Due to their efforts, we have been able to move our district in a positive direction. I am very proud to say that this district and community has collaboratively worked to provide an excellent faculty as well as educational and job opportunities.”