After months of negotiating, the Omaha Public Schools and its teachers have reached an agreement on a two-year contract.
OPS and the Omaha Education Association, the union representing roughly 4,000 teachers, sent details of the contract to teachers on Thursday.
The school board, which still must approve the contract, is set to vote on it Monday. OEA has approved the agreement.
Under the contract, teachers would receive a 1.81% pay increase for the 2019-2020 school year and an increase of 3.18% for the 2020-2021 school year.
The base salary for teachers would increase from the current rate of $41,150 to $41,500.
In the second year of the contract, teachers’ base salary would increase $1,000, to $42,500.
Employee contributions to health insurance premiums also would increase as part of the total compensation package.
“Our teachers are a key factor in our students’ success, and our ability to offer a competitive salary for the recruitment and retention of high-quality teachers is essential to the success of our school district,” said a note to teachers signed by OPS Superintendent Cheryl Logan and OEA President Robert Miller.
Earlier this year, negotiations for a new contract stalled. OEA asked the Nebraska Commission of Industrial Relations to order that mandatory mediation be conducted by a resolution officer.
The commission appointed a resolution officer in April, according to a commission document.
“This agreement is the culmination of efforts of both the district and the OEA,” the note from Logan and Miller said.
School board President Marque Snow said Thursday that OPS teachers could work anywhere but they choose to work for OPS because they love the district.
Teachers, he said, are key to increasing student achievement.
“We’re showing our teachers we value them and care about them,” Snow said.