HomeCommunity NewsLCUSD Employees to Receive Pay Bump

LCUSD Employees to Receive Pay Bump

First published in the June 30 print issue of the Outlook Valley Sun.

The Governing Board of the La Cañada Unified School District approved new contracts for employees that would increase salaries by 6% and provide improved health benefits.
The board unanimously favored the move Tuesday, and the new three-year contracts with the classified employees and teachers will go into effect July 1.
Teachers will have an additional two days of work and the increase in wages and benefits will cost the district an additional $1.75 million in expenditures.
Mark Evans, the district’s assistant superintendent of business administrative services who was at the negotiating table, assured the board that the incorporation of two pupil-free workdays in the next academic year was a request made by teachers to have more time to work on projects away from the classroom.
Board President Dan Jeffries applauded the move and felt it would not only benefit the teachers but the students, as well, because one way they can use the extra work time is by writing letters of recommendation for students.
“It’s a great solution,” Jeffries said. “It gives teachers more time to do what they need to do without taking any time away from the kids.
“We’re not reducing instructional days at all, and we’re adding the days so that teachers can take care of important things,” he added. “To do a good letter of recommendation really takes some thought and some effort, and so when I noticed that that’s one of the things the teachers can do on these extra days, it really makes sense. We want them to take their time.”
The new contract also updated its language in laws, education codes and transferring positions, especially at the elementary level, and updated the extra duty, extra pay schedule for teachers who also give their time to coaching.
Evans added that the legal language relating to class sizes remains unchanged at 24 students to one teacher — though LCUSD tends to do 22-to-1 or better.
The raises for classified workers, positions that do not require certifications, and improved benefits will cost LCUSD approximately $840,000. They will receive an additional holiday over the winter break and a day dedicated to professional development.
One of the biggest efforts from district staff was to improve the health coverage for employees, and they managed to match the coverage offered by LCUSD, which gives employees the option of PPO through Blue Shield of California or HMO through Kaiser Permanente, with the cost-of-living-adjustment of 6.56%. Evans said that LCUSD added more to the Blue Shield coverage to level the contribution from the district’s health plan, which is about 75.8% of the coverage.
“One of the things we have been working [on] the past couple of years is to bring those two in matching levels of contribution from the district standpoint,” Evans said. “This is an interest for everybody because as the PPO plan gets more expensive and people fall off, it spirals off into being more expensive.”


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