Orange County School Board approves teacher pay increase

The Orange County School Board on Tuesday approved a compensation plan for teachers that increases pay and delays hikes in health insurance.

The contract agreed upon Friday by the school board and the Orange County teachers union was added on late to the meeting's agenda and then voted on and approved. Now it needs approval from the county's public school teachers. They will receive their mail-in ballots over the next few weeks. The votes should be counted in December, and if passed, teachers will see an increase in their December 20 paycheck.

Teresa Jacobs the Chair of the Orange County School board said on Tuesday, "I don't want our teachers working two jobs. I want our teachers coming home and being parents. I want them to be able to give the same attention to their children, at home, their own kids, as their giving to our kids."

The new contract comes after months of negotiations between the board and the union. In July, Orange County teachers voted in a historic fashion and for the first time turned down an earlier agreement, arguing the raises were too small and insurance hikes were too high.

Albert Davies with the CTA said, "This is the best one year deal we've ever seen and we think it's the best one year deal in the state."

The deal gives teachers increases based on their rating. Teachers rated "highly effective" would receive a $2,800 annual salary increase. Teachers rated "effective" would receive a $2,100 annual salary increase. New teachers would receive a $700 annual salary increase. The deal is for the 2019-2020 school year. Negotiators will have to go back to the table for raises after the one year deal.