The 122 support staff in the Rockland-area schools will soon vote on a new labor contract after nearly three years without an agreement.

Negotiators for the Seacoast Education Association and Regional School Unit 13 reached a tentative agreement Thursday, Feb. 8, according to both organizations.

Negotiators for the teachers and School Board are scheduled to meet Monday evening, Feb. 12. Maine Education Association UniServe Director Rose Mahoney said the teachers and district are close to reaching an agreement.

The 80 teachers in RSU 13 are in their second year without a new contract.

RSU 13 Business Manager Peter Orne said everyone came out of Thursday night's meeting happy with the agreement.

Terms of the labor agreement will not be released until the two sides vote on the deal. Mahoney said the support staff — teacher aides, bus drivers, custodians, food service workers and administrative assistants — will likely vote on the tentative agreement after the February school vacation.

Orne said the board will schedule a special meeting once the staff ratifies the agreement so that the board can also approve the proposed contract.

Orne said the contract agreed to for the support staff is for three years and expires June 30, 2018. He said, however, the groundwork has been set for another agreement for future years and he hopes that can be settled before the end of the current school year.

In RSU 13 under the contract that expired June 30, 2015, which is the one still in place, the pay for educational technicians starts at $11.08 per hour for someone with no experience. The top pay is $16.37 per hour for someone with higher education and 20 or more years' experience.

Under the lapsed teacher contract, which expired Aug. 31, 2016, the salary scale ranges from a low of $36,250 for a teacher with a bachelor's degree and no experience to a high of $63,889 for a teacher with 19 years or more of experience who has earned a master's degree and 15 additional credits. The contract also calls for the district to pay 100 percent of employee health insurance premiums and 75 percent of the difference between the cost of a single policy and a family policy.

Support staff and teachers had been taking actions such as working to the specific terms of the contract, entering and leaving the schools only as required by the contract. The staff also formed gauntlets for board members to walk through during meetings late last year.

RSU 13 consists of Rockland, Thomaston, Owls Head, South Thomaston and Cushing.