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New teacher salaries may increase nearly $4,000

Beginning in the 2009-2010 school year, new teachers hired at Dickinson Public Schools may start at $31,000, nearly $4,000 more than last year's base salary of more than $27,000, school officials say.

During Wednesday's meeting of the DPS Collaborative Bargaining team, preliminary salary proposals were released, under the stipulation that the salary numbers may change.

"Based on the legislature, nothing here is a final offer because I'd be real concerned that they would change something at the last minute," said School Board President Dean Rummel.

In the proposal, all full-time staff will receive a minimum increase of $1,900 with an average of $3,055 during the 2009-2010 school year, said DPS Superintendent Paul Stremick.

"All of the numbers change in the index (this year)," Stremick said. "We're confident that everyone on the salary schedule is doing better with this index."

The staff salary index is based on the amount of education staff members have received, the amount of continuing education credits and years working for DPS accumulated.

In the 2010-2011 school year, the beginning salary for new teachers is expected to increase again to $32,500.

In other matters, after concerns were voiced about coaches and activity directors not getting compensated properly, Stremick said he would look into the costs of having Harlow's Bus Service., the company that currently services DPS, conduct all the bus trips.

"We don't have enough drivers, and I think you should help those that are helping you," Hrouda said. "Coaches are spending time getting bus ready and making sure everything is safe for the kids and not getting compensated for it."

Hrouda said he was also concerned with liability issues concerning drivers suffering from sleep deprivation.

"If we're truly concerned about liability, we should just hire Harlow's to do all the driving. They'll do it, it'll be pricey but they'll do it," Stremick said. "Harlow's does have the option in their contract; I'll look into it and see how much it's going to cost."

The next meeting of the Collaborative Bargaining Team is 7 a.m., May 5th, at the Central Administration Building.