Teacher pay raises gobble up Prop 30, LCFF funds

Teacher pay raises gobble up Prop 30, LCFF funds

In 2012, California voters approved Proposition 30, which temporarily raised sales taxes on everyone and income taxes on the wealthy. The measure was sold with the promise it would directly help public education. It was “for the kids.”

In 2013, the California Legislature approved a dramatic change in how schools were given state dollars in adopting the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF). The law was sold with the promise it would provide extra funding directly to the education of students who were English learners, the category of kids whom Gov. Jerry Brown had said were particularly crucial to California’s future.

It’s now December 2014, and the evidence keeps building that the primary use of both Prop. 30 and LCFF funds has been to respond to pent-up teacher union demands for pay raises.

This is from last week in the San Francisco Chronicle:

San Francisco teachers overwhelmingly approved a new contract Thursday night that gives them a 12 percent pay increase over the three-year term, union officials said.

More than 78 percent of the 2,799 teachers voting approved the terms of the contract …

utlaThis is from Wednesday in the Los Angeles Newspaper Group’s family of papers:

United Teachers Los Angeles President Alex Caputo-Pearl will not be fulfilling his campaign promise of a double-digit pay raise this year, as union leadership backed down from demands for an immediate 10 percent hike.

The 35,000-member teachers union met Tuesday with negotiators for the Los Angeles Unified School District and proposed a 9 percent raise this school year paired with negotiations for additional raises the following year. However, leaders for the school district say they can’t afford to meet the demand.

LAUSD’s latest offer — 4.02 percent in bonuses and an additional 2 percent salary increase to be paid over the next seven months — is $80 million less, and because most of it would be in the form of one-time bonuses, the two sides are divided by $188 million per year in permanent salary hikes.

This is from Tuesday’s San Jose Mercury-News, which reports on a district where elected officials actually seem to remember the promises made about Prop. 30 and the LCFF.

SAN JOSE — Bargaining between teachers and the East Side Union High School District appears to have hit a wall.

The district has requested that the Public Employee Relations Board declare an impasse and appoint a state mediator, the district announced Monday.

In its latest offer, the district proposed a 5 percent salary increase, plus 1 percent more in the spring if the Legislature allocates more funds to school districts. The East Side Teachers Association rejected that offer on Friday, the district announced in a letter to staff and parents.

This diversion phenomenon hasn’t gotten much attention yet. However, when the Vergara v. California case reaches the appeals court level, it seems likely to be used by reformers as a telling new example of how major players in California’s education establishment value the interests of teachers over students.

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