California Educator

November 2015

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Page 43 of 59

LAMMERSVILLE TEACHERS AT ODDS OVER CURRICULUM, COMPENSATION Lammersville teachers in San Joaquin County are at odds with the school district on curriculum and compen- sation issues in contract talks, but that did not prevent Lammersville Teachers Associa- tion (LTA) members from sharing parent advice during a Halloween event. Members and stakeholders wore signs encouraging the school board to choose students first when mak- ing decisions. Educators held a public demonstration about contract talks in early November. Teachers also engaged attendees at a recent parent-teacher event, handing out reading li sts, advice on learning and updates on what's happening to teacher morale with limited support for programs. e school board eventually held a special meeting about teacher morale as contract talks entered their seventh month. See updates on the LTA Facebook page: Bargaining Roundup Grossmont Education Association executive board member James McFarland with several educators affected by the school district's new maternity leave policy: Bridgett Desonia, Michele Frens (with children Maverick and Maddox) and Kelsey Beeman (with children Londynn and Brooklynn). Details of these stories at OH BABY — GROSSMONT SCHOOL BOARD OKS PAID MATERNITY LEAVE It's a first for a school district in California: On Nov. 2, the Gross- mont Union High School District board in San Diego County voted to approve six weeks of paid maternity leave, retroactive to July 1, 2015. e move benefits families and students as it will do much to attract and retain qualified educators. It's clear that with statewide demand for teachers intensifying, strat- egies that seek to attract and retain young professionals are beginning to take shape at negotiating tables in California. e 2015-16 contract agreement between the Grossmont Educa- tion Association and the district also includes a 5 percent increase in salary. BAY AREA CHARTER TEACHERS HELP BOOST ESP MEMBERS' PAY In a show of solidarity to raise the salaries of their education support professional colleagues, teachers at unionized Mare Island Technol- ogy Academy Education Association in Vallejo in Solano County negotiated to give their 3 percent raise for the 2014-15 school year to the ESP workers — boosting their pay by 17 percent. "We decided we were going to stand with our ESP members," says Ryan Cole, president of the 55-member association. "We really are like one big family." e bargaining unit is wall-to-wall and covers all employees. A new contract was ratified in October for the independent charter school covering grades 6-12. All employees will also get a 5 percent raise for this school year as well. LTA members engage with parents and encourage their district to choose students first at a recent event. 42

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