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School staff to receive stipend

Contracts approved for teachers, support staff

Webster City School District administrators, teachers and support staff will be awarded a one-time stipend for the extra efforts put in during the two-week remote learning period in late November and early December 2020, following action taken by the Webster City school board Monday night.

The board met in-person at the school administration building with the public joining in via the Zoom conferencing platform.

The district moved to a remote learning model in late November when the number of COVID-19 cases made staffing difficult.

Dr. Mandy Ross, superintendent, told the board she appreciated the extra efforts by the district staff during the move to remote learning.

“I have recommended that in light of the extra work that our staff went through when we made that rather rapid adjustment to online learning for two weeks after Thanksgiving,” she said. “I have to say how proud I am of our staff and how quickly they were able to turn it around, make adjustments and really continue to work hard to serve the needs of kids.”

Ross said every staff member was impacted by the two-week switch to remote learning. She recommended that the board approve a $750 stipend for teachers and administrators and a $500 stipend for support staff.

She said the stipend checks would go out as separate checks in May and added that IPERS will not be taken out, but taxes would.

“This money is made possible because we were able to move some costs to ESSR (Elementary and Secondary Relief) funds so that freed up some of our general fund money. These checks will come out of the general fund,” she said.

Board member Rich Stroner said he would like to amend the action by including Ross in the stipends.

“Dr. Ross wasn’t included in this. She also participated in all of the wonderful activities we had last year, and I feel she deserves a bonus like everyone else,” he said.

The board approved the one-time stipend payments, including Ross.

In other board action, contracts with the Webster City Education Association and the Webster City Educational Services Association were approved by the board.

The contract for the WCEA called for teachers to advance on step and an increase of $190 to the base salary, bringing the base to $37,230.

The WCESA agreement would give $.25 per hour wage increases for employees, and a $25 per route increase for bus drivers. WCESA employees would also advance on step.

The board also approved wage increases for administrators and non bargaining staff that mirrored what the teachers and support staff received, respectively.

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