As explained in last October’s Contract Matters: Update Projections Versus Actuals, the teacher contract calls for using funding projections to determine if there would be an overall funding increase from 2015 and then calculate a projected raise. The district and the teacher’s union disagreed about the rate of two ongoing salary increases that were to take effect July 1, 2016, and January 1, 2017 and a one time payment due January 1, 2017. The union then filed an expedited grievance.
In late July, an arbitration opinion was reached on the grievance. The opinion found that the district violated the contract when it tried to use enrollment data to adjust for both ongoing salary increases, as there was already a “safety valve” to allow for adjusting compensation based on different LCFF projections. The district did not violate the contract for the one-time payment because it was not subject to the same parameters as the ongoing increases.
The settlement award grants OEA Members employed in both the 16-17 and 17-18 school year a one-time payment of .51% and grants OEA Members employed in the 17-18 school year an ongoing salary increase of .34% effective July 1, 2017. The arbiter stated that these awards are to help make union members whole, while not placing “undue administrative burden” on the district. Click here to read the entire arbitration opinion.
I have two main takeaways after reading the opinion:
- Both the district and the union should have explored all possible scenarios when they were coming up with a salary increase formula based on state funding projections. During negotiations in 2015, neither side played out the possibility of a sharper decrease in LCFF funds, which is what ended up happening.
- In creating a funding formula based on projected funding, one must also specifically say whether or not enrollment drops could affect the raise calculation. The current formula did not mention enrollment at all.
To find out just how much to expect in your paychecks this year, contact your HR Staffing Analyst.
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