The New Albany-Plain Local school board on July 24 approved a three-year contract for employees in the the Ohio Association of Public School Employees.

OAPSE represents about 250 district employees who aren't in teaching positions. (Teachers are represented by the Plain Local Education Association.) The contract is retroactive to July 1 and concludes June 30, 2020.

Under the new contract, OAPSE employees will receive a 1 percent base salary increase each of the three years in the contract, at an annual additional cost of about $50,000 for the district.

Finance director Becky Jenkins said OAPSE members have had no base salary increasees for three years. The average base increase with the new contract is 1 percent.

A bus driver at step 0, for example, would make $18.46 per hour. At step 1 with no base increase, the driver would make $19.54 per hour.

At the same step level with the base increase, the driver would make $19.72 per hour, she said.

"This agreement with OAPSE, or our classified staff, demonstrates a firm commitment to a partnership that will continue to deliver great services to our students and our community in a fiscally sustainable manner," Jenkins said. "These staff members provide essential supports to our students and other staff through services in and out of the classroom, on the way to school, in the cafeteria and beyond. It all amounts to our commitment to students first, and our classified and support staff are essential to our success."

Emails sent to OAPSE president Kim Nein seeking comment were not returned.