We, the Board of Education, are pleased to announce that the EWSD (East Williston School District) has settled negotiations with its teachers unit in a four-year contract that includes a freeze in wages in the first year of the contract and averages a 1.1 percent wage increase over the four-year term of the contract.
All auxiliary salaries and stipends have been frozen for two years and employees will continue to contribute 20 percent to their health insurance.
The members of the Board of Education believe that an outstanding school system both insures the highest quality of education for our children and respects the ability of the constituency to support it.
In any successful negotiation process the outcome has to be a mutually acceptable solution for both parties.
The goal of the district was to significantly reduce costs, and with this contract we have made a giant step forward in containing cost over the next four years.
Our teachers union realized the district’s challenges and responded to our challenges in order to preserve the educational integrity of our programs. We appreciate the union’s acceptance of a salary freeze in the 2011/2012 school year, as well as their willingness to accept periodic freezes in automatic incremental steps throughout the term of the contract.
You need no reminder that education in New York State is at a truly perilous crossroad. Financial support from Albany continues to dwindle while unfunded mandates continue to be put on the back of the residents of our district. Educators are being accused by the governor of New York and the county executive of Nassau County of being inefficient, ineffective, overpaid, over benefited and simply greedy.
All the while our teachers stood up to the challenge, ignored the rhetoric and continued to work with our children, attended and participated in special events and kept the channels of communication open during the process. It is time that New York State and Nassau County stop pointing fingers, but rather begin working together to protect our children’s future.
Nothing is more important to this board than protecting the education of the youngsters we are sworn to serve. We know that our teachers share in that goal and in the end that is our common bond.
Mark Kamberg, president
Bob Freier, vice president
Robert Fallarino, trustee
David Keefe, trustee
Barbara Slone, trustee