APT President Michael Da Rosa Speaks To The School Board 11-9-16
PUSD BOARD OF EDUCATION MEETNG
9 November 2016
Good evening, President Konigar-Macklin, Board Members, Superintendent Martinez, Cabinet Members, CSEA and APT sisters and brothers and all those present this evening.
First of all, APT wishes to congratulate Dr. Roberta Perlman and Mr. Frank Guzman for their recent recognition as honorees by the Los Angeles County Democratic Party. The civic involvement, engagement with our community and dedication to our students, parents and families warrants the honor that the Los Angeles County Democratic Party has bestowed upon both of you.
As we ended our evenings and shortly thereafter began our days this morning, many of us share bittersweet sentiments regarding the election results. As members of the California Teachers Association, APT leaders continued their efforts through phone banking at our union hall until the eve of the election. Just as our members led the effort to pass Proposition 30 in 2012, so too did APT do our part to pass its replacement, Proposition 55. The California Teachers Association supported Prop 52, extending Medicaid support for our most needy families, Prop 55, and Prop 58, supporting multilingual education. With the support of CTA, all three of these progressive propositions passed. APT leaders also contributed to the passage of Measure P through the postcard campaign, writing personal messages to residents in Pomona and Diamond Bar and through our phone banking efforts. We are pleased that Measure P passed and we were
pleased to have helped in this effort. Now, we look forward to the benefits that this will bring to our classrooms.
As far as the bitter part of the election results, I will not use this forum to lament.
Both APT and PUSD knew that it would be wise to postpone our negotiations until after the election and we look forward to resume bargaining. Tonight, we have invited members to come to this meeting and address you directly. As we have discussed on many occasions, our school district is facing a problem with teacher recruitment and retention as our salary schedule has fallen behind. While CTA has provided comparable salary schedules for our region, our members have done their own research on comparing salary schedules for the greater Los Angeles Metropolis. They not only have shared these schedules with our office, they also share these schedules, or more specifically the end of career annual salary with one another. When we compare the final annual salary with other districts in our region, this is where PUSD fall drastically behind. APT has offered a reasonable and respectable solution that deserves serious consideration.
Our solution is one that offers not only a respectable salary at the beginning of our careers, but also continues to provide a competitive salary at all stages of our career. We have heard from a few of our members, particularly from one of our schools that does not agree with our approach. They may be here this evening to express their opposition. As I stated at last month’s board meeting, there are always some of our members that oppose the efforts of our bargaining team. We expect that to happen.
Our members understand what it means to be professionals. That is why they choose to do far more than all of the demands placed on
them: to provide a 21st Century classroom in teaching Common Core curriculum, providing the best possible first teaching instructional practices, providing ongoing formative assessments, and ultimately been held accountable for summative assessments.
Yet, as professionals they do more. As we have asked our members to provide examples of the extra services that they provide to our students, we listed many of them to share with you this evening. The list that we have to share with you is only a portion of the services that our members provide without extra compensation. That is because they are professionals that care deeply about their clients, our students. While we understand that we provide all of these extra services without additional compensation, we do expect that our district knows the value of these services, knows the uniqueness of what is required of our teachers, counselors, nurses, teacher specialists, teachers on assignment and education specialists, and therefore understand your responsibility to provide a competitive salary schedule at ALL stages of our career. That is the good faith understanding that we are requesting from this board.
We continue to be committed to the Interest Based Bargaining process. We clearly know that a competitive salary schedule at all stages of our career is a common interest to recruit and maintain the best educators that are students deserve.
We have been bargaining for a long time. The election has ended in our favor. We need to settle soon and direct our efforts to the important work that we have started.