Tentative agreement with TUSD gives teachers 3 percent raise
by Denise Ellen Rizzo
Mar 20, 2014 | 4561 views | 0 0 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Tracy Unified School District and local teachers reached a tentative agreement March 13, including the first teacher pay raise in five years, according to the Tracy Educators Association president, John Anderson.

“Financially, it is a step towards improving our living and working conditions for the educators in Tracy,” Anderson said. “I think both sides gained some positive changes. It’s not about coming out on top. We feel we’re going to mutually benefit from these changes, T.E.A. and TUSD. Salary is a big part of the settlement.”

A news release stated the pay raise includes a 3 percent salary increase for this school year, retroactive to July 1, and a one-time 1.65 percent lump sum.

The district and teachers union also agreed to change several aspects of the teachers’ working conditions.

“It isn’t just about the money,” Anderson said.

He said that the hours teachers work each day and their professional development time were among the articles negotiated.

The teachers union last settled on a contract with the district Aug. 24, 2011. At that time, the union accepted a contract that kept teachers’ salaries unchanged and made no other changes to the master agreement, Anderson said.

The recent contract agreement followed more than a year of negotiations that eventually went into an impasse in November and required a third-party mediator, Danoy said. The mediator was called in January and met with both groups twice in the week the contract was tentatively approved.

In a TUSD news release issued March 13, Superintendent Jim Franco said, “Tracy Unified strives to meet the financial priorities of our employees, and we feel that has been achieved through this agreement with the T.E.A. This allows both parties to move forward as we implement the Common Core State Standards.”

Anderson said the next step would be a vote to ratify the contract by the roughly 730 teachers in the union. That vote is scheduled March 27.

If the contract is accepted by T.E.A. members, it will need approval by the San Joaquin County Office of Education budgeting office, Danoy said. Then the agreement will go to the TUSD school board for final approval.

• Contact Denise Ellen Rizzo at 830-4225 or drizzo@tracypress.com.

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