MILLBURN, NJ—Millburn Board of Education Negotiations Chairman John Westfall-Kwong announced at Monday’s board meeting that the Millburn Education Association (MEA) and the school body have reached a three-year agreement.  Both the MEA and the board have ratified the agreement which will run from July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2017.

MEA president Lois Infanger announced at Monday’s meeting that the contract received an 89 percent approval rating from her members on Friday.

Under the agreement, according to Westfall-Kwong and Infanger, the pool of monies for salaries will be increased by 2 percent for each of the three years.  This does not mean that each member of the MEA will receive a 2 percent, increase, and, as a matter of fact, approximately 48 percent of the members will receive 1 percent or less, they added.

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“Health benefit contributions will remain as required by law.  Currently, that is between 23 and 35 percent of the health insurance premium with approximately 48 percent of the MEA membership paying 32 to 35 % of the premium,” the school leaders said.

Several language issues were cleaned up throughout the contract including: prep time, faculty meetings, graduate course work and the grievance procedures, they noted.

“The negotiating process afforded the opportunity for the MEA and BOE to have an open and respectful dialogue not only about the contract but other topics which are on the horizon for education,” Infanger and Westfall-Kwong added.

In another action at Monday’s meeting, assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction Christine Burton gave a presentation on completion of the first year of the district’s strategic plan.

Among the progress items was completion by school staff members of training in the Orton-Gillingham reading instruction method.