Teacher contracts approved

Luverne School Board members unanimously accepted a two-year union agreement with teachers during a special session conducted electronically March 19.

The agreement ended six months of discussions including a Feb. 28 mediation between the district and teachers union.

Combined salary and benefits is 8.87 percent over the two years.

For the 2019-20 school year teachers will receive a salary increase of 2.6 percent in addition to an insurance increase from the district of 14 percent.

In 2020-21, teachers will receive a salary increase of 2.4 percent and an insurance increase from the district of 3 percent.

On average, teachers will receive an salary/benefit increase of $4,214 for 2019-20 and an increase of $3,299 for the second year.

Board members met using Zoom, a videoconference platform to avoid personal contact due to the COVID-19 peacetime emergency declared by Gov. Tim Walz on March 15.

The declaration closed schools and recommended social distancing to stem the spread of the coronavirus.

Sixteen people joined the online meeting. Board Chairman Jody Bosch conducted the meeting from the district boardroom at the Luverne Middle-High School with administrative assistant Brenda Teal and district technology coordinator Wade Hiller.

Seventeen others, including the six remaining school board members, joined the meeting remotely from homes or offices.

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