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COLUMBUS — Pay and benefits packages for about 310 classified staffers at Columbus Public Schools will be the same 3.77 percent increase for the 2017-18 school year that school board members OK’d for teachers in February.

The school board voted to approve the raise for staffers on Monday afternoon after earlier in the meeting passing a 3.17 percent pay bump for 15 district administrators.

The anticipated expense boost for classified staffers will be $220,430 for the coming school year, said Dave Melick, executive director of operations and human relations for the district. Classified staff include clerical and food service employees, custodians, drivers, maintenance workers and paraeducators.

The pay and benefit packages for administrators, which include salaries, Social Security and Medicare, state retirement and insurance, will increase district spending by about $40,000. Administrative staff includes executive directors, principals, assistant principals and activities administrators.

Superintendent Troy Loeffleholz’s salary and benefits package is not included in the figures for administrators.

In February, board members gave more than 280 teachers and other certified staffers a 3.77 percent pay and benefits increase that amounted to about an $802,855 spending increase for the district. The agreement was negotiated between a subcommittee of the school board and Columbus Education Association.

CPS uses an array of 10 similar-sized school districts for salary and benefit comparability during negotiations.

Melick said CPS ranked third-highest among the 10 comparable districts, slightly above the fourth-ranked district.

In other business, the board also OK’d six applications for teachers to participate in the district’s temporary early retirement incentive program this year.

The retiring teachers are Deborrah Bringwatt, English language learners at the middle school; Lisa Davies, first grade at North Park Elementary; Sandra Joseph, fourth grade North Park; Laura Porter, fifth grade at Centennial Elementary; Sherry Thompson, second grade at Lost Creek Elementary; and Anne Weber, sixth grade at the middle school.

There were 21 teachers eligible for the retirement program this year, Melick told board members.

The retiring teachers have an average salary of $68,000 and the younger teachers filling their positions will have an average salary of about $39,000, Melick said.

“It’s a significant savings to the district,” he said.



Jim Osborn is a news reporter at The Columbus Telegram.

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