NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — New Haven teachers will soon see a bump in pay.
On Tuesday, the New Haven Board of Alders voted to ratify a contract with the teachers’ union, which includes raises for the next three years.
“In New Haven, being an urban school district, on average every year you lose 150 teachers,” New Haven Public School Superintendent Iline Tracey. “They leave for different reasons. It could be relocation, it could be that they didn’t like the working conditions, they didn’t like their salaries, and there were better salaries somewhere else.”
Tracey hopes this new contract will combat that. In it, educators will get roughly a 5% pay increase each year for the next three years. That means, for a teacher who is just starting out, they’ll break the $50,000 threshold by 2025.
“We went into the contract negotiations focused on two things: teacher retention and working conditions,” said Leslie Blatteau, president of the New Haven Federation of Teachers. “The biggest accomplishment for the district and the union was the raises.”
The union, district and city said they want to make sure teachers feel valued and that salaries are competitive.
“We were getting calls through the fall of people saying, ‘I didn’t think I’d ever leave New Haven, but I can make $15,000 more here, $20,000 there,'” Blatteau said.
Here’s how New Haven stacked up — for new teachers in the district, their salaries were in line with Bridgeport, a few thousand less than Hartford and Meriden, and $5,000 less than Norwalk.
“People are looking ahead and looking at their raises for the next 1, 2, 3 years and saying, ‘Yes, I can see myself staying,'” Blatteau said.
The district is also hoping to draw qualified candidates in and help fill those vacancies.