Teachers in the Mukilteo School District attended the June 11 school board meeting to urge elected officials to renegotiate salaries. (Andrea Brown / Herald file)

Teachers in the Mukilteo School District attended the June 11 school board meeting to urge elected officials to renegotiate salaries. (Andrea Brown / Herald file)

Pickets, protests pay off as Mukilteo teachers get hefty hikes

The deal needs to be ratified by the teachers union and be approved by the school board.

MUKILTEO — There were pickets, protests and constant pressure.

And on Wednesday, public school teachers in Mukilteo secured what they had been pursuing for months — a sizable pay raise for the district’s roughly 1,000 certified classroom instructors.

Teachers in Mukilteo School District will see their salaries climb around 13 percent under a tentative agreement announced Wednesday afternoon.

Under the proposal, the annual salary for a first-year teacher with a bachelor’s degree would climb from the current $51,856 to $58,481. At the other end of the scale, a teacher with 12 or more years experience and a master’s degree, would be paid $112,396, up from $99,016.

Those were the only details revealed by representatives of the district and the Mukilteo Education Association, which is the teachers union.

“This agreement was possible due to the engagement and advocacy of our union over the last few months,” union President Dana Wiebe wrote in an email. “More details will be released after our membership meeting.”

The union is expected to ratify terms at its general membership meeting Aug. 29. Once teachers have acted, school board directors must approve the pay hikes. Though the board might not meet until September, the increases would be retroactive to Sept. 1.

“We were always optimistic it was going to happen,” district spokesman Andy Muntz said. “I think both parties were working to get it done. I don’t think there was any doubt we would do that.”

Wednesday’s announcement culminates months of efforts by teachers to convince the district’s administration and school board to share the spoils of the landmark school funding lawsuit known as McCleary.

In April, the association sent district leaders a formal demand to renegotiate its contract, which runs through August 2019, to put an infusion of state dollars from the lawsuit into salaries.

But Assistant Superintendent Bruce Hobert turned them down, saying lawmakers “did not intend to impair existing contracts” when they added funding and made other changes earlier this year. He argued the two sides had a closed contract.

Teachers then began to conduct informational pickets on school days during lunch. And large crowds started showing up at school board meetings imploring district directors to intercede and get negotiations started.

In June, with teachers feeling they were not making headway, they took a vote of no confidence in Superintendent Marci Larsen and gave the union’s bargaining committee authority to call a strike if there was no tentative agreement to consider by Wednesday.

Last week more than 100 teachers and supporters, many in red shirts and carrying “Fair Contract Now!” signs held a sidewalk demonstration in Everett. The rally preceded a scheduled three-hour bargaining session with district officials later that day.

The accord in Mukilteo erases the threat of a walkout. It comes two weeks after teachers in the Edmonds School District reached a deal for pay hikes of as much as 20 percent in the coming school year.

In both districts, teachers are working under contracts which don’t expire until August 2019. What they sought was to reopen those contracts to negotiate salary increases with an injection of state dollars as a result of the McCleary suit.

Elsewhere in Snohomish County, teachers are in the midst of negotiating completely new collective bargaining agreements with their respective districts. They all are looking to secure agreements by Aug. 31, the end of the school fiscal year.

Jerry Cornfield: 360-352-8623; jcornfield@herald net.com. Twitter: @dospueblos.

Talk to us

More in Local News

A driver struck a woman in a motorized wheelchair Saturday in Lynnwood. (Lynnwood police)
Woman on wheelchair hit by car in Lynnwood, seriously hurt

The woman was on a sidewalk, passing by a drive-thru in Lynnwood, when a driver pulled out and hit her.

A barge worker hauls in an oil boom before heading off with the remains of the Mukilteo Ferry Dock ramp and pier on Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021 in Mukilteo, Washington. With the new dock in operation, all that is left is to tear down the old ticket building. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Old Mukilteo ferry dock afloat on the barge of ‘Lincoln Logs’

The haul included 213 wood pilings, 15 concrete pilings, 47 steel pilings and a “Speed Limit 15” sign.

State Patrol worker from Everett charged with attempted child rape

Trevor Smith worked as a commercial vehicle enforcement officer assigned inspecting school buses.

FILE - In this Jan. 7, 2021, file photo, the Legislative Building is shown partially shrouded in fog at the Capitol in Olympia, Wash. Washington state's richest residents, including Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos, would pay a wealth tax on certain financial assets worth more than $1 billion under a proposed bill whose sponsor says she is seeking a fair and equitable tax code. Under the bill, starting Jan. 1, 2022, for taxes due in 2023, a 1% tax would be levied not on income, but on "extraordinary" assets ranging from cash, publicly traded options, futures contracts, and stocks and bonds. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)
Federal package could drive more than $10B to Washington

The state would get $7.6B for COVID response, schools and child care. Snohomish County is in line for $160M.

Samantha Lake
Missing girl, 12, found safely

Seattle FBI located Samantha Lake on Friday.

Everett man identified after being found dead in creek

The cause of death for Renee Baltazar Romero remained under investigation Thursday.

Jeanette Ho Shin Weddell, 96, died of COVID-19 on Dec. 29, 2020. (Contributed photo)
Marysville grandmother, 96, was one in half a million lost

In a week when the president took time to mourn COVID deaths, local families were grieving, too.

An access road leads into plot of land located in north Darrington that could potentially be used to build a 30-acre Wood Innovation Center, which will house CLT manufacturing and modular building companies on Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021 in Darrington, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
$6 million grant is green light for Darrington timber center

The Darrington Wood Innovation Center is set to become a reality — bringing roughly 150 jobs with it.

Report shows vaccine inequities in Snohomish County

The county’s Hispanic population is getting doses at a third of the rate of white residents.

Most Read