VERONA, NJ - The Verona Board of Education and Verona Education Association have reached a new collective bargaining agreement for teachers, administrative assistants, and custodial/maintenance staff. Negotiations began in February and were completed in June with the help of a state mediator from the Public Employment Relations Commission.

The VEA ratified the new contract on Sept. 4 and the Verona Board of Education approved the agreement on Sept. 11. The terms of the contract are retroactive to July 1 and in effect from July 1, 2018 to June 30, 2021.  The new agreement includes the following:

Salary and Benefits

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  • The agreement provides salary increases of 2.75%, 2.90% and 2.90%, overall, in each respective year of the contract. Distribution of salary varies across the salary guide depending on individual staff credentials.

  • Staff will move increment steps in each of the three years.

  • Existing health benefit plans and staff health insurance premium contribution structure remain in effect.

Other Items

  • The parties agreed to include doctoral studies in the tuition reimbursement program.

  • Evaluation language was streamlined to match state statute.

  • Custodial overtime procedures were clarified to develop an equitable assignment system based on seniority.

  • The payment structure for 10-month Administrative Assistant summer work was changed to align with teacher practices.

  • Parent-teacher conferences were streamlined to require only fall conferences in order to provide more instructional time in the spring.

“The success of the Verona Public Schools is driven by the collective efforts of our staff. The compensation profile of the staff, which includes salaries, stipends, and benefits, comprise over 65% of the total annual district budget. The Verona Education Association represents over 200 of those staff members, across various employee roles.  We must always strive to balance competitive compensation, professionalism & quality of life in the workplace, and the boundaries of our budgets," said Board of Education President John Quattrocchi.  "That balance is best managed with a long-term strategy, covering many years at a time, across multiple contracts, in order to keep our finances in order and to keep Verona a great place to learn, to work, and to live. We thank the collective efforts of both sides through the negotiations process and we are pleased to have a solid contract for the coming years.”

“We are pleased to have developed a competitive contract for our teachers, administrative assistants, custodians, maintenance personnel, medical staff, and counselors," said VEA President Christopher Tamburro. "This agreement begins to address the lower take-home salaries that many of our members face each year due to tax caps, increased health benefit contributions, and higher pension contributions. We are pleased that the Association and Board were able to work together to create a contract that will help to retain our excellent, student-oriented staff.”