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Teachers union offers reasons for pay hike demand

LA School Report | January 16, 2014

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UTLA logoThe LA teachers union, UTLA, just released a statement, explaining a decision made last night to seek a 17.6 percent raise raise for teachers and other LA Unified employees.

The release does not specify a time frame for the salary demands. What follows is the full text of the statement:

“UTLA is tired of LAUSD’s rhetoric without action on pay increases for employees, smaller class sizes, and full staffing. The union’s governing body approved a salary increase demand of 17.6% on Wednesday, along with a package of demands including smaller class sizes, restoration of early education and adult education programs, and full staffing—bringing back counselors, nurses, librarians, and other Health and Human Services professionals. The union plans to bring the demands to the bargaining table as soon as possible.

“It’s been more than a year since California voters approved Proposition 30, the tax increase that is bringing millions of new dollars into the District. For the 2013-14 school year, LAUSD’s per pupil allocation increased 5.8%, and under the Governor’s new proposed budget, a 10% per pupil increase is expected in 2014-15.

“Throughout the state, school districts have approved salary increases to begin to pay back teachers and other employees who sacrificed during the recession years. In Los Angeles, teachers and Health and Human Services professionals took salary cuts over a four year period through furlough days and they have not had a cost of living increase in seven years.

“UTLA President Warren Fletcher said, ‘Parents and community members have experienced hardships themselves in recent years, and can relate to the economic needs of teachers and others who serve our students. Los Angeles teachers are leaving the profession or taking jobs in other districts, out of necessity. Students in this district should not be robbed of experienced teachers and HHS professionals while the Superintendent spends millions on pet projects.’ ”

“UTLA’s demands align with what the voters intended when they approved the tax increase—that the dollars would go to the classroom. That means smaller class sizes, restored services, full staffing, and fair compensation for employees.”

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