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Litchfield teachers seek wage increase
"Effective teaching is what schools and school districts are all about," said Superintendent Brian Cochrane, noting Litchfield teachers have been working two years without a contract.
If it is not approved, Cochrane said, some of Litchfield's quality teachers could leave for other school districts paying $8 or $10 more an hour.
No amendments were made to the collective bargaining agreement warrant article between the school district and the Litchfield Education Association, which calls for an increase of $213,383 for the upcoming school year, $195,737 for the following year and $175,545 the third year.
Derek Barka, chairman of the Litchfield School Board, said the recommended contract would increase starting teacher salaries from $33,623 a year to $36,517 throughout the three years of the contract.
"It is eye opening," said Barka. "These are professionals."
"I don't disagree that teachers deserve a raise," said Chris Pascucci, a budget committee member who voted against the contract. However, Pascucci said he could not support the contract because of the overall cost to taxpayers - an increase of nearly $585,000 over three years, and a .26 cents increase on the tax rate.
- Kimberly HoughtonSunday News Correspondentkhoughton@newstote.com
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