Boston, City Teachers, Announce Tentative Contract Deal

BOSTON (AP) — The city of Boston and the union representing about 10,000 teachers and other employees of the city's public school system have reached a tentative contract agreement that provides for pay raises and an overhaul of the way the district approaches special education, both sides said in a statement.

“As educators, the needs of our students are our number one priority and this agreement lays the foundation to achieve what we call ‘inclusion done right’ for the benefit of all students within the Boston Public Schools,” said Jessica Tang, president of the Boston Teachers Union.

The contract comes at a time of transition for the troubled system, which recently hired a new superintendent and staved off a state takeover by pledging to implement immediate improvement efforts in several key areas.

The agreement announced Thursday includes additional investments to support the changes needed for special education, including funding for additional support for students with individualized education programs and English learners.

“For far too long in Boston, students with disabilities and their families have faced a system that neither recognizes nor delivers what every child deserves,” Mayor Michelle Wu said. “I’m proud of an agreement that supports our educators and takes concrete steps towards building a special education and inclusion model that will help us make Boston a city for everyone.”

The three-year agreement also includes annual wage increases of 2.5%, plus an additional 2% over the length of the contract.

The deal now requires ratification by union membership and approval by the Boston School Committee.