If you read my post a little bit ago Time for Summer of Belt Tightening Again you know that the wife was one of the 1600 laid of by the San Diego School District. This has presented lots of upcoming challenges with loss of income of course and loss of health benefits on June 30th (and me with procedures scheduled for July and Aug). Well the union leadership and the district sat down last week and hammered out an agreement. It was agreed that there really is now money this time, hell the whole state of CA is in trouble and school districts and unions all over the state are making concessions to prevent layoffs.
There are a lot of factors in the agreement but what it boils down to is the following.
- the contract would be extended another two years
- teacher would postpone the raises that were scheduled for next year (if a tax proposition is passed a smaller one will be given)
- most of the teachers laid off would be reinstated by June 30th
- the remainder should be brought back by the start of school year, as teachers retire or leave.
- those not brought back by une 30th would have benefits extended till sept 30th
- early retirement bonus offered
- some furlough days
Given the current economic situation I think that is a good deal. The agreement gets voted on by the membership this Sun-Tues. You would think this is no problem, unions stand together and it will be voted through for the greater good of all teachers and the students (class size will dramatically increase if things stay the way the are). Well not so fast, seems there is now a splinter group formed lead by the former union president (that was voted out recently). This splinter group is pushing hard to vote no, their moto “no concessions”. They want the no negotiations cause they think there is money (the rainy day fund) and the union should just wait till the school year and call the districts bluff. Not to mention its made up of almost all teachers that were not laid off and would be getting a nice raise while their “union brothers and sisters” sit at home with out jobs or health benefits for their families.
Now most know I’m not a fan of unions. There are many other things I disagree with them on, but in this case i think they did right and they should stand together in these times just as they did in the past. Yes I am a little biased in this case as well as it is my family that will be without an income and health insurance if the vote fails. We also are not sure if she will fall in the first group or the second group if it passes. One of the union rules is it goes by seniority so will depend on how many retirements and attrition.
So we wait now and see what happens. Sparks are already flying on Facebook pages