As Pink Friday Arrives, Davis Teachers Still Weighing Options

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As the California Teacher’s Association organizes statewide to draw attention to the teaches who may lose their job, Davis Teachers will be wearing pink today, although there will be no formal protest.

Davis Teachers continue to weigh their options according to a source.  Last week a survey was soundly defeated 86% no to 14% yes that would have considered taking a pay cut.

Despite that vote, many of the DTA representatives felt that teachers had a problem with the wording of the survey and that under different circumstances many of them would be willing to give part of their salary to prevent another teacher from losing their job.

At a meeting at Emerson, according to a source, a member of the representative council submitted a new proposal.

Three weeks from now the DTA will hold a general meeting at which the following proposals will be voted upon (if the first passes, the second will not be considered):

1. The DTA members instruct their negotiators to come to an agreement with the DJUSD to reduce the teacher salary scale by 4% for the next three years, with the following considerations…

a. All monies realized from this salary reduction must be applied to the employment of teachers who would otherwise be released by the district.

b. If new unrestricted monies come into the district during the next 3 years, approximately 80% of that would be added to the teacher’s salary schedule.

c. Teachers may renegotiate this agreement at any time during this 3 year period.

d. If no negotiated adjustments have been made prior to the end of this 3 year period, the salary scale will revert to its 2008-09 value.

2. The DTA members instruct their negotiators to come to an agreement with the DJUSD to reduce the teacher salary scale by 2.5% for the next three years, with the following considerations…

a. All monies realized from this salary reduction must be applied to the employment of teachers who would otherwise be released by the district.

b. If new unrestricted monies come into the district during the next 3 years, approximately 80% of that would be added to the teacher’s salary schedule.

c. Teachers may renegotiate this agreement at any time during this 3 year period.

d. If no negotiated adjustments have been made prior to the end of this 3 year period, the salary scale will revert to its 2008-09 value.

While the proposal was discussed at length.  It was ultimately defeated.  However, a second motion passed instructing the negotiating team to discuss these items at the table. 

According to this source, neither the district nor the teacher’s negotiation team has talked in negotiations about any matter concerning any type of salary reduction. 

The only time it was brought up was at the superintendent’s special meeting.  Apparently some members of the board were not aware of this presentation and did not approve of some of the language such as that all reductions would be permanent, for example.

The bottom line here is that the dialogue is still alive and no options are off the table.

—David M. Greenwald reporting

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About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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21 thoughts on “As Pink Friday Arrives, Davis Teachers Still Weighing Options”

  1. CT

    Well, state budget analyst coming out and warning the budget will be *at least* $8 billion short next year, even after the recent agreement. Considering the way the business environment looks right now, hard to imagine that number won’t keep going up (er.. down).

    In other words, we’ll be having this discussion again next year, no matter what happens this year.

  2. Rich Rifkin

    [i]86-14 and you think it is the wording??????[/i]

    Presuming the vote numbers are accurate, how much you want to wager that the 86 are all tenured teachers with seniority, while most of the 14 are more junior?

    In the end, it doesn’t matter how recalcitrant the DTA is next year. If the Board of Education for the DJUSD offers a good faith contract which includes a 4% reduction in pay, the teachers will have only two options: take it or walk. Because the district (according to my read of its website) registered the requsite motions in January, when the current contract expires on June 30, 2009, the district will be under no legal obligation to continue paying the old salary schedule.

  3. Another DJUSD teacher

    Hummm….all this back seat analysis from those who are not in these meetings….and for those who are wondering today the district rescinded eight pink slips (I know three teachers who got a visit from Kevin French this morning). So the district is finding the money somewhere. Makes you wonder if the district looks hard enough, they can hire most (if not all) back without the teachers taking a two and half to four percent pay cut.

  4. Ryan Kelly

    So the district is finding the money somewhere. Makes you wonder if the district looks hard enough, they can hire most (if not all) back without the teachers taking a two and half to four percent pay cut.

    That’s quite an assumption.

  5. wdf

    Last month’s budget deal is already out of whack, $8 billion short, even before the May election:
    [url]http://www.sacbee.com/static/weblogs/capitolalertlatest/020638.html[/url]

  6. David M. Greenwald

    Basically what’s happened is that the districts overnotice with the PKS. As the district finds out who is coming off leave and who is stepping down, they pull some of those back. There is no extra money.

    And frankly, pay attention to wdf’s post, that is the next shoe to drop, so rather than things getting better, they are about to get a whole lot worse.

  7. Rich Rifkin

    [i]today the district rescinded eight pink slips (I know three teachers who got a visit from Kevin French this morning). So the district is finding the money somewhere.[/i]

    That is great news. If it means that the district won’t have to cut the wages as much, everyone wins. But it is just 8 of 40 — and it does not affect the 10 or so non-teachers scheduled to lose 100% of their income and 100% of their benefits. I know the teachers on the whole are not greedy. When others are suffering, they would not ask for more, more, more.

    Just remember the words of the immortal Billy Idol: [i]

    Last night a union worker
    Complained about the four
    Last night a union boss
    Was kicking on the floor

    She demanded a full contract
    Said screw it to the Guv
    And if the deal expires
    Pray help from above
    Because

    In the midnight hour
    She asked for more, more, more
    With a union teacher yell
    She wanted more, more, more

    In the midnight hour, Arnold!
    More, more, more
    With a DTA yell
    More, more, more
    More, more, more [/i]

  8. sauras

    How many times does Rifkin want to restate his misconceived ideas about what will happen when the contract expires? Its really astounding that he keeps playing this tune as if he believes it enough it will come true. The district will not be able to unilaterally impose a salary reduction when the contract expires. Rifkin instead of going with your reading of the contract why don’t you talk to someone who knows how these things work.

  9. Rich Rifkin

    [i]The district will not be able to unilaterally impose a salary reduction when the contract expires. Rifkin instead of going with your reading of the contract why don’t you talk to someone who knows how these things work.[/i]

    I’m sorry to burst your bubble, Saurus. I consulted with an expert in state law and was told my presumption was right. Both statutory and case law confirms what I’ve said in this regard. The applicable labor law is [b]California Government Code Section 3505.4:[/b]

    [url]http://law.onecle.com/california/government/3505.4.html[/url]

    [i]”If after meeting and conferring in good faith, an impasse has been reached between the public agency and the recognized employee organization, and impasse procedures, where applicable, have been exhausted, [u]a public agency that is not required to proceed to interest arbitration may implement its last, best, and final offer[/u], but shall not implement a memorandum of understanding. The unilateral implementation of a public agency’s last, best, and final offer shall not deprive a recognized employee organization of the right each year to meet and confer on matters within the scope of representation, whether or not those matters are included in the unilateral implementation, prior to the adoption by the public agency of its annual budget, or as otherwise required by law.”[/i]

    My expert further suggests: “See County of Alameda, PERB Dec. No. 1824-M (2006) (a PERB decision saying while parties are negotiating a new contract, the current contract and its terms remain in effect and cannot be changed.) Also you could have a look at San Joaquin County Employees Ass’n v. City of Stockton, 161 Cal.App.3d 813 (1984).”

  10. Rich Rifkin

    The DTA contract expires June 30, 2009. I was told school begins on August 26, a few days shy of two months later. The district opened up the salary schedule for negotiation in January (according to its website). If impasse procedures have been exhausted at the end of August, the district will be able to unilaterally implement its “last, best, and final offer.”

    Note, however, that I DO NOT EXPECT THIS TO HAPPEN. I don’t think our Board has the courage to do what is right, to not fire employees, to have everyone, including those with seniority, take a small pay cut so that education does not suffer. If we had a Board with that kind of conviction, we would not have such a serious fiscal problem at present.

  11. wdf

    If you’d like to curl up with a horror story this weekend, check out the original LAO report which was the basis for the Sac Bee article cited above:
    [url]http://www.lao.ca.gov/laoapp/PubDetails.aspx?id=1967[/url]

  12. wdf

    Sac City USD — consolidating, closing schools, have dropped by 5,000 students in 8 years:
    [url]http://www.sacbee.com/ourregion/story/1698776.html[/url]

  13. wdf

    Pink slip demonstrations in Vacaville:
    [url]http://www.thereporter.com/ci_11912798[/url]

    Woodland:
    [url]http://www.dailydemocrat.com/ci_11904135?source=most_viewed[/url]

  14. sauras

    But you left out a bunch of steps Rifkin. After a long process the district can impose a contract but the teachers would also be free to call a strike at any time. Its not that the school board doesn’t have the spine its that the community would never stand for it.

  15. Rich Rifkin

    [i]But you left out a bunch of steps Rifkin.[/i]

    I could not have left out any steps, because I never attempted to lay out what steps there are, other than to suggest that if, in the end, the DTA is recalcitrant, the District has the right (should it want to) to impose a 4% pay cut. That’s the step which counts, Soreass.

    [i]After a long process the district can impose a contract but the teachers would also be free to call a strike at any time.[/i]

    No one has suggested otherwise, Soreass. But by striking come August 26, with no other avenues for anyone to act, the DTA would be saying to the people of Davis, to the parents, to the students and to the 50 workers for the district whose jobs are on the line, “Education is not our priority. Saving 50 jobs is not our care. All we want is more, more, more.” It’s the rebel yell.

  16. Rich Rifkin

    [i]”It’s not that the school board doesn’t have the spine, it’s that the community would never stand for it.”[/i]

    The community would never stand for maintaining smaller class sizes? The community would never stand for preserving the jobs of 50 people who now work for the District and need those jobs? The community would never stand for the best educational opportunity possible for the kids of this district? Why would the community never stand for those things? All to honor the wishes of a militant teachers’ union in troubled economic times?

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