Bill calls for statewide contract for teachers' salaries, benefits

AUGUSTA, Maine (NEWS CENTER) — A bill that sets all Maine teachers salaries and benefits through a statewide contract is up for public hearing Thursday in Augusta. 

Local school boards and superintendents would still hire their teachers based on the student-teacher ratios but once they're hired, the state would pay their salary and benefits based on a contract collectively bargained between the state and the Maine Education Association.

Currently in Maine, teacher contracts are negotiated within each school district. 

Rep. Matt Pouliot, a republican from Augusta, is sponsoring the bill (LD 864 "An Act To Provide for a Statewide Contract for School Teachers") and will present it Thursday, at 1:00 to the Education and Cultural Affairs Committee.

Maine teachers on average are paid less than the national average and the make the least of all the New England states. 

The national average salary for a teacher is $58,064; the New England average is $70,067 while Maine continues to lag behind at $50,229. 

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