Melrose teachers reach deal on new contract, avoid strike

The Melrose School Committee and the Melrose Education Association have agreed to a three-year teachers’ contract for the Melrose Public Schools, the groups announced Saturday night — days before the educators were prepared to go on strike.

The contract will provide cost of living and market adjustments totaling 10 percent over the contract’s term, as well as increases preparation and planning time for teachers across the district, “which will enable Melrose to recruit and retain high-quality educators who serve all students,” the announcement read.

The term of the contract runs retroactively from July 1, 2022 through June 30, 2025.

“On behalf of the Melrose School Committee, I believe that this contract shows our dedication to both the interests of the community and the commitment of our hard-working teachers,” announced School Committee Chair Margaret Driscoll. “We look forward to the MEA’s continued partnership in support of students, as we continue the tradition of excellent education provided to all students in Melrose.”

“The Melrose Education Association extends our sincere thanks to everyone who supported us as we worked to reach a tentative agreement with the Melrose School Committee that meets the needs of our members, our students, our families, and our community,” said MEA President Lisa Donovan. “We are especially proud of the Melrose educators who so eloquently and passionately fought for the schools that our Melrose community deserves.”

“As mayor of a community I love, and as a graduate of Melrose High School, I’m proud that the city was able to make a significant investment in our students, educators and school district,” said Mayor Paul Brodeur. “I’m grateful for the hard work of our bargaining team, including my colleagues on the School Committee and the Superintendent, and for the collaboration of the MEA team.”

“I am beyond grateful that our Melrose educators and School Committee have reached a tentative agreement,” said Superintendent of Schools Julie Kukenberger. “This contract not only provides our dedicated teachers with the compensation they deserve, it also provides them with more preparation time to support thoughtful and engaging lessons designed for our students in personalized and individualized ways. A strong, competitive salary schedule will help the district retain our amazing educators and fill critical positions needed to better serve our students. Thank you to the Mayor, School Committee, and MEA negotiation teams for reaching this agreement.”