Bargaining Resources

Bargaining Resources

The Iowa State Education Association believes in the right of all public employees to bargain a fair and just contract so local educators can have a voice in their workplace. The ISEA supports local bargaining teams in school districts, AEAs and community colleges by providing the training and resources needed for each local to bargain effectively. The ISEA knows that when educators have a voice at the table, conditions in classrooms and worksites across the state are better for students and staff.

Bargaining reports

Bargaining Report glossary

Local: ISEA locals for school districts, area education agencies and community colleges who contributed information to the bargaining report.

Master Agreement Status: Either the employer agreed to a multi-year agreement with the local before the effective date of the new bargaining law, or the local is under the new law. The employers who negotiated an agreement before the new law took effect protected the working conditions of educators and met the all of the criteria for the bargaining report. The following criteria are for those locals under the new law.

Permissive Language: Base wages is the only mandatory subject of bargaining. Almost all other important working condition language is permissive except for a few excluded topics. Permissive means an employer is not required to discuss this language and can unilaterally set these educator working conditions. An employer meets the criteria if it has maintained all permissive language. This is not as educator-friendly, but an employer can also meet the criteria if it maintained some of the permissive language. If the employer does not meet the permissive language criteria, it has stripped the contract and has only negotiated base wages.

Salary Schedule: A salary schedule or salary system is very important for educators as it provides an equitable and fair method for promotion and cost of living increases. An employer meets the criteria if it maintained or improved the previous salary schedule or salary system. This is not as educator-friendly, but an employer can also meet the criteria if it maintained the previous salary schedule or salary system with minor changes.

Health Insurance: Health insurance is an excluded item of bargaining. The benefits are completely at the discretion of the employer. The employer meets the criteria if it maintained or improved health insurance benefits.

Excluded Topics: Excluded topics of bargaining include subjects such as health insurance, transfer procedures, supplemental pay and evaluation procedures. The employer meets the criteria if it placed these items in a handbook or board policy with no detrimental changes.

Labor-Management Committee (LMC): An employer meets the criteria if it has created a labor-management committee with regular meetings allowing educators input into excluded topics. A handbook does not provide legal or continuing security for educators. Thus, an LMC is vital to provide educators a voice.

Multi-Year Master Agreement: An employer meets the criteria if it has agreed to a master agreement with at least two-year duration. Multi-year agreements avoid annual recertification votes which are a distraction and take vital time away from educators.

Salary Data: Salary data from the Iowa Department of Education is included. The average beginning salary is the average for all brand-new teachers in the district. This is not necessarily the district’s starting salary. A district might not have an average beginning salary if it does not have any new teachers. Salary data does not apply to area education agencies, support staff or community colleges. The state rank is out of 333 school districts.

Useful links

Iowa Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) website

PERB searchable database

For ISEA members

ISEA members can find additional resources here.