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Kalispell teachers get new three-year contract

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Posted: Wednesday, February 19, 2014 9:00 pm

Kalispell Public Schools teachers have a new, three-year contract that includes a 2.35 percent increase on the base salary for the 2014-15 school year.

The contract begins July 1 and goes through June 30, 2017.

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          Welcome to the discussion.


          • DJJackson posted at 12:50 pm on Thu, Feb 20, 2014.

            DJJackson Posts: 738

            Boy oh Boy, lots of assumptions going on in this conversation. I do agree the districts here are mismanaging money and have for a long time, I do hope the new super has more common sense and understands his fiscal responsibilities to the community.

          • Mike70 posted at 11:33 am on Thu, Feb 20, 2014.

            Mike70 Posts: 3

            averagejoe: I just recently switched jobs to a "government teet" job and I would like to address a few of your "concerns". First off my mother is a teacher and she works many many more hours than I do (for about 60% of the pay) and her salary doesn't seem high enough. Second, all of the teaches that live in your neighborhood aren't necessarily raking in money from their teaching jobs. They could be living well over their means and simply live on credit. Appearances can be very deceiving. They could also have family money. Your assumptions are seriously lacking.
            I also have a comment on your business situation. If you made the incorrect decision to start your own business you are simply a bad business person or are affected by the overall economy of the valley. If you are affected by the valley economy you most likely are in construction and made money hand over foot when it was booming there and you simply made poor savings decisions. I know a whole bunch of realtors who are in your same situation. Point being you have the opportunity by owning your own business to make multiples of your current income while teachers are NEVER going to make multiples of their current salary, but in exchange they get summers off as well as a decent retirement. It is only a "government teet" if you are struggling like you and have to take out loans on your house. I am sure if you were making hand over fist you thought the teachers were morons for having a job that pays them a measly 35k a year.

          • Valleynative posted at 11:08 am on Thu, Feb 20, 2014.

            Valleynative Posts: 7

            Overpaid or Underpaid.....how about just right? There is not a single teacher in District #5 that is making $48,000 unless they have worked a minimum of 8 years and have the equivelent of a masters degree, +15 credits on top of that (all paid for out of the teachers pocket and on their own time). We want our teachers to gain more knowledge and skills to benefit our students.

            It's hard for me to believe that a majority of college graduates (working in their chosen field) within this valley are only making $20,000 as averagejoe would have us believe. Also, since your just an "average joe", are you suggesting that teachers should be "below-average" because "average" people live in the nicest neighborhoods in Kalispell; teachers should live in the "hood"?. Boy I would hate to have a teacher living in "my" neighborhood; there go the property values.

            Yes teachers get longer than average vacation time. Many use this time to go back to school or get a second job. So as I started....overpaid or underpaid, I think they are doing just right. (btw: averagejoe, you need to get the specifics on your "double-dipping" accusations....you are incorrect, they do not get extra pay)

          • Montana Native 420 posted at 10:53 am on Thu, Feb 20, 2014.

            Montana Native 420 Posts: 209

            Hamnegs: No this is by far the worst district to get an education from. For example glacier high school, they bought all these expensive flat screen tv's and gadgets that only distract from the education progress. They use out dated books because they 'Can't afford' new books because they don't know how to manage tax payers money. They think they got an endless supply of money and don't care about the students. They push and shove to get every student out the door to be unemployed in this economy.

          • HamNeggs posted at 9:57 am on Thu, Feb 20, 2014.

            HamNeggs Posts: 79

            Sorry MT Native 420, you are just wrong. Teachers are not overpaid and the overwhelming majority of them do care about the students. The only valid arguments against increased teachers salaries are your ignorant posts. If you were truly 'educated' in district 5, they failed with you. But maybe you were just born that way. Nature vs Nurture. They teach....but can't make miracles.

            Averagejoe- So basically your logic is that since YOU are a struggling business owner, teachers don't deserve a raise. A base salary of 28k and a medium of 48k and you think they are overpaid? I guess if they are so overpaid you should have geared your business toward catering to all those rich teachers! Then maybe you wouldn't be struggling. Not all of independent business owners are struggling btw. Instead of trying to bring others down to your level, why don't you try the opposite and see how that works?

          • Montana Native 420 posted at 9:11 am on Thu, Feb 20, 2014.

            Montana Native 420 Posts: 209

            I once had a teacher tell me that they don't care if any of us passed that they still got paid no matter what. And that was here in district 5 just a couple years ago

          • Montana Native 420 posted at 9:09 am on Thu, Feb 20, 2014.

            Montana Native 420 Posts: 209

            48k a year to sit on thier a $ $ and yell at kids. Teachers are over paid and don't care about the students

          • averagejoe posted at 8:08 am on Thu, Feb 20, 2014.

            averagejoe Posts: 253

            So this spring when the district starts its annual "Support our Schools Support our Kids" campaign to try and pass a levy. I guess you can mark me down as anti kid. Imagine a person expecting the district to spend its money wisely, shocking. The union has made all of the financial decisions for years in Kalispell. When cuts are needed they always go after the programs that help the kids the most to guilt people into voting yes. There is a lot of bloat in this district and everyone knows it.
            By the way according to the 2010 U S census for Kalispell, teachers make almost $8000 per year more than other professionals who have bachelors degree and are working in their field of study. Even within district 5 there is a large pay discrepancy between people who have teaching certificates and those who just have plain ol bachelor degrees, its why they have a hard time keeping their IT guys.
            Yeah Kris I made a bad career choice, I just had to borrow 80k against my home to keep the doors to my business open after six years of a bad economy because the banks have slashed our line of credit down to nothing. Funny thing is all of us guys who took personal initiative and started our own businesses are going broke and the people who have sucked off the government teet are all thriving. Most of us have always supported our schools but I guess you can say that we have reached our limit. It gets a little old hearing how bad the teachers have it when the people paying their salaries are losing their homes.

          • GoDawgs posted at 7:55 am on Thu, Feb 20, 2014.

            GoDawgs Posts: 109

            Teachers in Montana do not get paid well as compared to their counterparts in most all other states. Please do not think that. I know several year teachers with over 10 years experience who left Montana reluctantly for much better paying teaching positions in other states. I also know my neighbor who is a teacher in Denver. She has been teaching for over 15 years and used to teach in the Flathead. She has been teaching in Denver for about 6 years and makes over $20K more in Denver for the same position here. Crazy. So, now her and her husband live part of the year in Denver while school is in session and they live here in the summer. They own a house here and rent one in Denver. When she retires they will move back here full time.

          • krispistofferson posted at 7:12 am on Thu, Feb 20, 2014.

            krispistofferson Posts: 265

            You're whining because you made the wrong career choice and your solution is to rip teachers. Classy!

          • averagejoe posted at 10:35 pm on Wed, Feb 19, 2014.

            averagejoe Posts: 253

            Oh by the Kris I live in one of the nicest neighborhoods in Kalispell and a lot my neighbors are teachers in district 5. If they are so under paid how do they afford to live here. Most of them also drive very nice vehicles and take nice long vacations. It is really surprising how many husband/wife teaching couples that live by me. Combined income of 100k not bad in anyone's book. Throw in summers, Christmas and spring break off with early retirement it looks pretty good. I screwed up and started my own business if I had to do it again I would look real hard a teaching profession, maybe then I could a least look forward to retiring someday.

          • averagejoe posted at 10:25 pm on Wed, Feb 19, 2014.

            averagejoe Posts: 253

            My neighbor who is a teacher told me that in this new contract that they can substitute teach in another class during their prep period. I said this did not sound right because they are already being paid by the district during that time period and that that time is supposed to be set aide for class prep. They told me that this was set up for teachers that are coaches who will be gone during the afternoon. So now we have teachers being paid to teach who are out of the class coaching while being paid for that and then we have teachers being paid to substitute in a class while they are being paid to do class prep at the same time. There seems to be a whole lot of double dipping going on at the taxpayers expense. By the way none of this double dipping or any of the stipends or benefits are part of the $48,387 salary that the average teacher gets. This is why I will not vote for a levy, not until this type of mismanagement changes. I cannot believe that this was approved by the school board, talk about being a sleep at the wheel.

          • krispistofferson posted at 10:00 pm on Wed, Feb 19, 2014.

            krispistofferson Posts: 265

            One other thing...their increase is likely eaten up by increased health insurance premiums. Yup, teachers got it made all right!

          • krispistofferson posted at 9:57 pm on Wed, Feb 19, 2014.

            krispistofferson Posts: 265

            On 28 grand libra? With tens of thousands in debt from getting the degree? Go for it dude. You'll likely need a summer job on top of it. What're you waiting for?

            Presently you're just a cheap shot artist.

          • Kalispell worker posted at 9:44 pm on Wed, Feb 19, 2014.

            Kalispell worker Posts: 69

            Teachers (in general) are very valuable. Here is to hoping that the right teachers are guiding our next generation to be better than mine!

          • libra42 posted at 9:28 pm on Wed, Feb 19, 2014.

            libra42 Posts: 461

            I'm pretty sure I could get by on that.


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