RVS reaches agreement with teachers association
By: Allison Chorney
| Posted: Thursday, Feb 27, 2014 10:48 am
Rocky View Schools (RVS) and Rocky View Teachers Alberta Teachers’ Association (ATA) Local 35 reached a collective agreement through arbitration on Feb. 14.
“We’re not happy,” said ATA Local 35 President Michelle Glavine. “We are very unhappy with the results of arbitration.”
Glavine added the ATA Local 35 was disappointed the negotiations ended in arbitration and said throughout the province only 19 of 62 divisions entered into arbitration to come to a new collective agreement with teachers.
She said she is displeased the agreement does not have elements that extend past the 2016 expiry date.
“The vast majority of teachers throughout the province have some things put in their agreement that continue on past the expiry date and ours does not,” she said.
The union is disappointed about changes in the new agreement including: the loss of a day-off-in-lieu for RVS teachers who have parent-teacher interviews in the evening instead of the day like other divisions do.
She said in the past RVS teachers were given a day-off-in-lieu but that has been removed in this new agreement.
The new agreement will see a 0.41 per cent increase to salary grid rates effective Sept. 1, which will bring teachers’ salaries to the modified provincial average, which according to the Alberta Education website, ranges from about $58,500 to $99,300 depending on post secondary degree and years of experience.
The agreement also means a two per cent increase in salary grid, allowances and substitute daily rates effective Sept. 1, 2015 and a one per cent lump sum payment to RVS teachers on Nov. 15, 2015.
Effective Sept. 1, teachers will be eligible for an additional week of maternity leave, bringing the total to eight weeks, and teachers working under a contract greater than half of full-time teacher hours, will receive one day personal leave at no cost to the teacher.
The new collective agreement takes effect immediately and will expire Aug. 31, 2016.
“Our board is very pleased to have an agreement with our teachers, whose work we appreciate and value. The agreement respects the board’s current fiscal reality and is fair in relation to school boards around the province,” said RVS Board Chair Colleen Munro in a press release.
Support staff, which refers to all employees not covered by the collective agreement with the ATA and includes a range of employees from learning support assistants to clerical staff, will also receive increased compensation with the new agreement with a 0.41 per cent increase effective Sept. 1.
Support staff employed with RVS on Nov. 15, 2014 will also receive a one-time 0.5 per cent bonus based on projected gross earning, less overtime for the period of Sept. 1 to Aug. 31, 2015.
Caretaking staff hired before Aug. 28, 2011 will see an increase of 0.91 per cent effective Sept. 1.
Caretakers hired after Aug. 28, 2011, will receive an increase of 4.3 to 5.3 per cent, depending on salary grid placement, Sept. 1 as well.
Compensation for support staff beyond the 2014 to 2015 school year will be determined at a future date.
“We value the contribution of our support staff and want to compensate them in an equitable manner, as has been our past practice,” Munro said.
The agreement did not address teachers’ workload, which are being reviewed by RVS and ATA Local 35.
“We are currently working collaboratively with Rocky View Schools to review teacher workloads under the terms of the legislation, and we hope to improve teaching and learning conditions in the division.” Glavine said in a press release.
“We still have very big class sizes, which is a really big concern for teachers,” Glavine said.