The Atlantic Highlands Board of Education (BOE) would like to clarify some assertions made by the Atlantic Highlands Education Association (AHEA) in a Letter to the Editor dated October 17, 2018:
• The AHEA has not received an increase in compensation since September 2018 because they are at impasse with the AHES BOE and an agreement is not yet reached. Retroactive payments of any increase are a part of mediation.
• The statement by the AHEA cites recent administrative increases of “3.2%, 5% and 6.4%”. At a recent board meeting, the Education Association incorrectly quoted one administrator increase at 25% when the actual increase was 3.2%. The two administrators listed by the AHEA at 5% and 6.4% received an actual raise of 3.0%. The additional increments to their salary was for additional responsibilities added to their job descriptions. These responsibilities were previously paid by a stipend.
• Since there will only be a small increase in healthcare premiums in 2019, AHEA contributions to healthcare will only increase by a small amount.
Since negotiations stalled over the summer, the Board has made numerous salary offers to the AHEA, but they are unwilling to move from their July 21 counter-offer. The Board is hopeful that with the aid of a mediator the two sides will reach an agreement.
The BOE deeply appreciates your patience during this difficult time, and we look forward to seeing you at the November 13 board meeting. The Board of Education will be making no further statements until after the December mediation meeting because we feel nothing is gained by public sparring with the AHEA.
We do not believe that disagreement is disrespect, and we do not disrespect the teachers of AHES.
Newly updated and more in depth information regarding negotiations can be found on our Board website at:
Alyson Denzler, President
Suzanne Santry, Vice President
Steven P. Lombardi
Julie Ann Mahoney