Hillsborough Schools, teachers' union reach tentative agreement on pay, child care costs and more

Must be voted on by the board, ratified by union
Posted at 11:08 AM, Jun 06, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-07 05:30:23-04

Hillsborough County Public Schools and the Hillsborough Classroom Teachers Association announced Wednesday they have reached a tentative agreement for the upcoming 2018-2019 school year. 

The agreement includes pay raises, a reduction in child care costs and other benefits. 

At a news conference on Wednesday, Superintendent Jeff Eakins said "it's a good day."

The tentative agreement must now be voted on by the Hillsborough County School Board and approved by a majority of members of the Hillsborough Classroom Teachers Association union. The teachers union consists of approximately 15,500 teachers and 4,500 educational support personnel. 

The tentative agreement would deliver $4,000 raises to both groups of teachers discussed in recent negotiations - those who were eligible for "one-level" increases in the 2017-2018 school years. But it does come at a cost. The union has agreed to give up one-third of the promised $4,000 for a year. Meaning teachers lose out on about $1,333.

Teachers' aides and other instructional support staff would receive a pay raise of approximately 6.25% and a one-time bonus of $150. Experienced teachers at the top of the pay scale would receive a one-time payment of up to 2% of their salary, according to a press release from Hillsborough County Public Schools.

All employees would also receive: 

  • Reduced child care costs through the HOST before-and after-school program offered in most Hillsborough County Public Schools
  • 100% of the premium for an employee-only health care plan paid for by the school district, continuing a benefit from previous years
  • Additional pay if they qualify as a National Board Certified Teacher of an eligible employee at a high-need "Renaissance" school

To make the agreement possible, district leaders reduced expenses to make more funds available for compensation. The district saved about $32 million dollars by cutting 800 positions and cutting spending. It's also working to end a budget deficit that stood at $130 million just three years ago.