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Archive for Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Lawrence teachers, district at stalemate in salary negotiations

July 11, 2012

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Lawrence’s school district and its teachers union negotiated for about two and a half hours with a mediator before coming to an impasse Wednesday as neither side flinched on their salary proposals for the 2012-13 school year.

Teachers and district officials prepare to begin salary negotiations Wednesday with the assistance of a mediator.

Teachers and district officials prepare to begin salary negotiations Wednesday with the assistance of a mediator.

The district and its teachers remained $500 apart on their proposed salary increases. Teachers are paid based on a pay schedule that provides more money both for teachers with more education and for teachers with more years of service, up to a maximum amount.

The district’s negotiating team stuck to its offer to increase each level on the schedule by $1,000, and the union stayed behind its offer that would have increased each level by $1,500.

Kyle Hayden, assistant superintendent for business and operations, said the district received $1.4 million in new money from the state and committed all that money to its current offer for teacher raises, while also contributing $1 million to hire additional staff.

“They feel like they’ve given all they can give,” Hayden said.

David Reber, a Free State High School science teacher, is the lead negotiator for the teachers. He said Lawrence’s teacher salaries lagged behind other districts and pointed out that a one-time payment of $1,000 made to teachers last year would be going away this year.

“Their last offer would essentially be that nobody takes a pay cut,” Reber said.

The teachers and the district will now begin a fact-finding process that could last well into the school year, though the two sides could still reach an agreement at any time.

An independent fact-finder would conduct a hearing and issue a nonbinding recommendation, and then the parties would reopen negotiations. If the school year begins without an agreement, teachers would work under the previous year’s salaries.

Comments

Dog 1 year, 9 months ago

Teachers work hard and for the most part care deeply about all of the students that they work with. As in any profession there are a wide variety of abilities and those who supervise teachers diligently work to provide professional development that supports the growth of educators. Lawrence is lucky because we have a school system that is better than most. It isn't the best, but if you listen carefully to information that is coming from the ESDC you can hear that they are focused on improving our school system for all. As a community it is time for us to support our teachers, classified staff and district administrators. Give them a raise!

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FalseHopeNoChange 1 year, 9 months ago

To make 'ends' meet. Union people need to take a 'page' from Flex's operation.

12 CPS principals, assistant principals accused of falsifying lunch forms

Twelve Chicago Public Schools principals and assistant principals have been removed from their positions for allegedly falsifying forms for free and reduced lunches for their own children, the school district and Inspector General’s office announced in a joint statement this morning.

(from the source)

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-12-cps-principals-assistant-principals-accused-of-falsifying-lunch-forms-20120713,0,5349548.story

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twobigones 1 year, 9 months ago

ok.............everybody calm down..............both sides can now agree........teachers are whiny and students are screwed!

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FalseHopeNoChange 1 year, 9 months ago

New America 'is' what it 'is' today because of years of government union employees teaching your children.

Good job. You all 'deserve' what you get.

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Matthew Herbert 1 year, 9 months ago

I always thought kids were bratty and hard to deal with. Then I met the parents.

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nascar 1 year, 9 months ago

tbaker Head over to the USD 497 website and take a look. You might want to look at the graphs that represent the increase in student assessment scores over the past five years among other bits of information. Perhaps the teachers don't post this information because it is common knowledge. It's not that teachers and support staff are not doing good work!

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tbaker 1 year, 9 months ago

Everytime this story makes its way onto the pages of the LJW, I ask the same simple question that every other working person in the world has to answer when they ask for a raise:

What have the teachers done to deserve one?

Have they brought any statistics to the negotiating table that demonstrate they have increased the graduation rate? Improved standardized test scores? Anything?

The only justification I have read in the many stories on this topic is their salaries "lag behind" those of other teachers. Imagine going into your boss asking for a raise on the soul basis there are other people in your field making more money. What do you imagine him or her would say to that?

1

Soapbox 1 year, 9 months ago

Please NO pay increases at Deerfield, they pass the buck, shuffle kids from grade to grade they shouldn't, make false promises, are dishonest and in general are leaderless. Not all teachers are doing this poorly, but enough that they should be fired. These individuals’ performances in private industry would get them not only fired but pushed out of the profession. We are their bosses, yet they see parents as interfering with the lifetime job they consider themselves to have.

Please NO pay increases at @#@!!@, they pass the buck, shuffle kids from grade to grade they shouldn't, make false promises, are dishonest and in general are leaderless. Not all teachers are doing this poorly, but enough that they should be fired. These individuals’ performances in private industry would get them not only fired but pushed out of the profession. We are their bosses, yet they see parents as interfering with the lifetime job they consider themselves to have.

Please NO pay increases at @#@!!@, they pass the buck, shuffle kids from grade to grade they shouldn't, make false promises, are dishonest and in general are leaderless. Not all teachers are doing this poorly, but enough that they should be fired. These individuals’ performances in private industry would get them not only fired but pushed out of the profession. We are their bosses, yet they see parents as interfering with the lifetime job they consider themselves to have. by Soapbox

2

Barclay 1 year, 9 months ago

"I think there are currently over 30 employees this city making over $100,000 not including benefits. 22 of these are police or fire department employees." Seriously? Wow. They are the smart ones- they should be teaching our kids.

It's not a popular subject with teacher's unions, but in Florida teacher's salaries have jumped because they are measuring student outcomes and rewarding successful teachers with incentive based pay scales.

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Enlightenment 1 year, 9 months ago

How about a user system. Have the parents with children pay a supplementary fee.

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Eride 1 year, 9 months ago

Does the union not understand the concept of a one-time payment?

No wonder our children are receiving such shoddy educations from these people.

1

TisSoSweet 1 year, 9 months ago

I'm pretty sure I can summarize any comments that you will see on an article about teacher salary negotiations.

  1. But the economy sucks, we can't afford this!
  2. That's not how it works, check out my cool logic.
  3. But teachers are lazy and they suck.
  4. Nuh-uh, teachers work really hard!
  5. Hey, what about the support staff?
  6. The union is legally not allowed to negotiate for support staff.
  7. Teachers suck. They should be fired, we don't have money for them.
  8. You're a stupid-head.
  9. You're a stupid head!
  10. Wash. Rinse. Repeat.
2

Matthew Herbert 1 year, 9 months ago

"fire them all in the fall". That's brilliant planning for the future; which city commissioner are you?

2

Cant_have_it_both_ways 1 year, 9 months ago

If the teachers want to bolt to another district just for money, then we don't need that teacher anyway.

Everytime I lost a job, I got a better one. Let them go and take their union with them. When they signed on the line they knew exactly what they were doing, now that they have the job, they want to complain about it. Imagine how much better the education of our children would be if they spent as much time teaching as they do bitching about their compensation package.

Fire them all in the fall.

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Keith Richards 1 year, 9 months ago

People seem to care a lot of about teacher salaries but no one ever mentions city workers salaries. I think there are currently over 30 employees this city making over $100,000 not including benefits. 22 of these are police or fire department employees.

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luvmyjhawktattoo 1 year, 9 months ago

What always ceases to amaze me is how the teachers are always saying they are underpaid. They work 10 months out of the year and are earning what it takes most people to make in 12 months. If they're lagging behind the salaries of other districts, move to another district. And also, without support staff such as paras, aides, custodians, food service workers, bookkeepers, secretaries... teachers couldn't fulfill their job obligations. Why is it always about teachers getting/deserving more money? What about the support staff?

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Matthew Herbert 1 year, 9 months ago

no "reapportion" plan is necessary. Before anyone is allowed to comment further on this article, I need you to repeat after me: "The money for this pay increase already exists and is already in the hands of USD 497". After repeating and comprehending that statement the following posts don't apply:

  1. "DON'T RAISE MY TAXES!!"
  2. "Where's that money going to come from?"
  3. "Just what we need, more money taken from taxpayers"
  4. "Lets take money away from the library/cops/homeless shelter/T/crazy lady downtown/Bob Schumm's terrible bbq restaurant/etc.. and give it to teachers"

oh, and please before insulting/complimenting David REBER, take a minute to make sure you read enough of the article to actually know how to spell his name. (one eye wilbur, bballwizard).

3

Topple 1 year, 9 months ago

Let's "reapportion" some of this money we are flushing down the toilet on the library, library parking garage, empT, proposed police station w/ 40+ extra police officers, proposed overnight on-call bus pickups, train station consultants, proposed train station, etc, etc....

2

Matthew Herbert 1 year, 9 months ago

Want to see what happens when, for a prolonged period of time you don't competitively hire teachers? Go visit USD 501, Topeka, Kansas. David Reber is correct - this is a matter of using already existing capital (no new taxes) to create competitive hiring practices. Having been involved with the Topeka school system previously, I've LITERALLY seen instances where a teaching position was filled with the ONE PERSON who applied. Believe me, you do NOT want that for your children.

1

Liberty275 1 year, 9 months ago

Stop negotiating now. Give the teachers a contract and 2 weeks to sign it. After all the teachers that want to keep their jobs reply, place ads in neighboring cities and right-to-work states and find replacements for those that prefer to not work for the rate offered by the district.

Why is the school district even bothering to talk to the union? We shouldn't give them the time of day.

1

Keith Richards 1 year, 9 months ago

Even if teachers were only babysitters and never taught children anything, they are underpaid. I know of absolutely no one that would accept the equivalent pay of approximately 1$ per child per hour to babysit let alone teach. This pay doesn't even factor in time spent planning, grading, setting up the classroom, cleaning up, etc.

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ockhamsrazor 1 year, 9 months ago

Lawrence taxpayers contribute their tax dollars to educate children. Instead, the district socks money away in accounts and underpays teachers. The result is we are losing talented people to surrounding communities and unable to recruit new talent. A teacher I know got a $6,000 raise simply by moving to Shawnee Heights. This has been the situation for years and it's getting worse. Look at the school district budget you will see what the district values. The money is there. It's just not going to the classroom.

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bobberboy 1 year, 9 months ago

P.S. Jeeeeeezzzzzz - I wonder what kind of bite that would take out of their income !!!????

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oneeye_wilbur 1 year, 9 months ago

Mr Reiber. . Those who pay you are lagging behind. The parents of children are lagging behind. What is It you do not understand. Not everyone makes what the teachers make and the benefits they get. Get real and quit begging. Be glad you have a job. But you and many of the teachers and admin staff. Have come to believe they are special and exempt from giving up a raise and unwilling to suffer a bit. some examples you as educators are setting!

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