Bargaining Update

District and SCTA reach tentative agreement

Overview
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 7TH UPDATE

At the December 7, 2017 Board of Education meeting, the district approved the tentative agreement with the Sacramento City Teachers Association on the condition it is ratified by SCTA members. Click here to view the tentative agreement.  

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 6TH UPDATE

The district and Sacramento City Teachers Association (SCTA) have reached a tentative agreement on a 3-year contract. More details of this agreement will be released in the coming weeks. 

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 4TH UPDATE

Both the district and Sacramento City Teachers Association (SCTA) have received the neutral third-party independent fact-finding report. The fact-finding report and recommended terms of settlement issued by the neutral fact finder on November 2, 2017 is hereby released to the public in accordance with Government Code section 3548.3(a). Click here to view the fact-finding report.

Both parties are meeting today to discuss the findings and attempt to reach an agreement. There is a $67 million difference between the district’s offer and SCTA’s offer. The district’s offer is costed out at $25 million. The SCTA’s offer is costed out at $93 million. The information on this page provides details on the district’s latest offer (September 15) and how it compares to other districts, as well as a history of the negotiations sessions over the past year.

Click here to download this infographic in pdf.

Click here to view details of the district’s contract offer.

Click here to view the proposed new salary schedule with all teachers earning a 6 percent pay raise. 

Lea este mensaje en Español.

LINKS TO CITED RESOURCES

SCUSD Fiscal Outlook

Rising Pension Costs in California Schools

SCUSD Teacher Compensation Facts (CDE data analysis)

What Others Are Saying

SCUSD Budget Facts

Response to SCTA Proposal 6/19/17

Average Health Benefits Costs

Archive of Previous SCTA Bargaining Meeting Updates

Click on each meeting date below to expand section.  

September 15, 2017

Last week the district worked collaboratively with SCTA leaders to continue making progress toward reaching a final agreement that honors the work and commitment that our teachers put into the classroom to support students in reaching their full academic potential. The district appreciates SCTA’s willingness last week to engage in productive dialogue that led to the tentative agreement of multiple previously unresolved items, including health benefits and safety conditions. While a lot of progress was made and we believe continued willingness on both sides to engage in constructive dialogue will result in an agreement, a final agreement has not yet been reached as the parties are still over $67 million apart in their proposals.  However, in the spirit of this renewed constructive dialogue, the district and SCTA ended the week with an agreement to continue meeting on September 27-28, 2017.

On September 15 the district updated its offer to invest $25 million toward salary increases and other supports, including additional Special Education personnel. These investments will incentivize and improve working conditions for our teachers as well as provide other supports to help students reach their full potential by meeting their academic and socio-emotional needs. Click here to view details of the district’s latest proposal.

The district’s proposal includes a three-year contract that would:

* Result in significantly higher wages for teachers;

* Improve working conditions by reducing caseloads for specialists and adding preparation time for Special Education teachers;

* Provide opportunities for current SCTA members to earn higher salary schedule placement based on their total years of service, regardless of which district(s) employed them; and

* Seek to achieve health cost-savings that could be used to make future investments in our classrooms on behalf of students.

We believe this latest proposal is a good investment for our students, respects the hard work and commitment of our teachers to be successful for our students and, equally important, maintains the district’s short and long-term financial health.  Specific highlights of the latest proposal include:

* Increasing all teacher salaries across the board by 6 percent over two years, and an additional 2.5 percent for 2018-19 if state revenues exceed current revenue projections;

* Teachers’ salary schedule placement will be based on overall number of years of teaching as of July 1, 2017, even if teaching took place outside of SCUSD. This is equivalent to an approximately 2 percent salary increase for affected members and gives SCUSD the opportunity to hire even more experienced teachers;

* The District will continue to pay an additional 1.85 percent toward the STRS contribution toward our teachers’ retirement accounts;

* Recruiting 20 full-time employees to reduce Speech, Language, and Hearing Specialist caseloads to 55 students, and in the interim continue meeting the requirements of servicing students;

* Recruiting 2 full-time School Psychologists; and

* Increasing the Doctorate stipend from $1,161 to $3,000.

Further, our latest proposal maintains the following benefits in teachers’ current contract:

* 100 percent free family health coverage (approximately $26,847 (HealthNet) per employee, which includes medical, dental, vision and life; cost for Kaiser is approximately $18,210);

* Continued lifetime health benefits for teachers. SCUSD is one of the few school districts where teachers are eligible for free retiree health benefits as follows:

- At age 55 with at least 20 consecutive years of service to the District in the SCTA bargaining unit;

- At age 56 with at least 19 consecutive years of service to the District in the SCTA bargaining unit;

- At age 57 with at least 18 consecutive years of service to the District in the SCTA bargaining unit;

- At age 58 with at least 17 consecutive years of service to the District in the SCTA bargaining unit;

- At age 59 with at least 16 consecutive years of service to the District in the SCTA bargaining unit;

- At age 60 with at least 15 consecutive years of service to the District in the SCTA bargaining unit;

As the Legislative Analyst continues to raise concerns about an upcoming downturn in the economy, the district would like to finalize an agreement so we can budget accordingly. There are a number of rising costs the district must plan and budget for. For example, the rising cost of public school retirement pensions as well as rising healthcare costs must be planned for. The district has been fiscally responsible in the management of its savings to be able to weather economic storms and fiscal emergencies. For example, because of the district’s savings strategy, we were able to save our After School programs earlier this year from a devastating $3 million federal funding cut. As we negotiate and budget for this contract, we do so with the next economic downturn in mind, so that teachers, students and schools will be protected down the line from the painful cuts we have had to endure in the past.

In the event that the upcoming negotiations sessions on September 27-28, 2017 do not result in a final agreement, the district will continue to bargain in good faith and abide by the fact-finding process and rules that both parties agreed to in July. This includes a fact-finding hearing chaired by a neutral third-party, followed by an independent report of the findings. The factfinding report and recommend terms of settlement issued by the neutral factfinder on November 2, 2017 is hereby released to the public in accordance with Government Code section 3548.3(a). Following the fact-finding process is important because it helps bring transparency to our negotiations by ensuring that proposals are independently reviewed and properly vetted before they are taken to the SCTA members for a vote.

The district is committed to continue bargaining in good faith and looks forward to soon reaching an agreement with SCTA so that our hard-working teachers can reap the benefits of this contract offer and get what they need to continue providing high quality teaching to our students.

Finally, it is our understanding that SCTA’s bargaining team has voted to ask their members to move ahead with strike votes. While SCTA has chosen to move forward with that action, the district will continue following the fact-finding process in good faith to ensure proposals are independently reviewed. We will also continue to share updates with the community as new developments occur.

September 1, 2017

The district is pleased to report negotiations with the Sacramento City Teachers Association have been productive over the past few weeks. In our last bargaining update we reported that both parties had been preparing for fact-finding and had agreed to a neutral party to chair the fact-finding panel.

During fact-finding preparation, a small group of SCTA and District representatives met to identify and organize issues.  In those discussions, some issues were resolved. Productive conversations on other issues have also been taking place. As a result of these new developments, the district and SCTA have agreed to convene a marathon bargaining session the week of September 11th.

Both parties have set a goal having a contract settlement by the end of the night on Friday, September 15th. If an agreement is not reached, both parties may mutually agree to directly move to a fact-finding hearing. Although wages, class sizes, staffing and other economic issues still remain to be resolved, it is our hope the productive conversations around these issues will continue.

We will continue to keep the community updated on this process. Thank you.

May 17, 2017

At the urging of the State Mediator, the District and SCTA agreed to participate in a third costing meeting earlier on Monday, May 15, 2017 involving a small group of representatives from each bargaining team.  Thereafter, the District and SCTA convened their fourth mediation meeting with the assistance of a State Mediator on Wednesday, May 17 at the Serna Center from 4:00 p.m. until about 9:00 p.m.  The parties actually reached and signed a tentative agreement regarding Article 9 – leaves.  However, there continues to be a big gap between the Parties and no further progress was made on reaching agreement on a successor contract.  As such, SCTA requested the mediator to release the Parties to fact finding and the District stated its concurrence with that request on Thursday, May 18.  The District also invited SCTA to continue the dialogue as the Parties move forward through fact finding, which will begin after the State Mediator formally releases the Parties to that process. 

April 25, 2017

The District and SCTA convened their first mediation meeting with the assistance of a State Mediator on April 19, 2017.  The District and SCTA agreed to continue the mediation process at a second meeting on April 25, 2017.  At the urging of the State Mediator, the District and SCTA also agreed to participate in a costing meeting involving a small group of representatives from each bargaining team and the mediator.  The costing meeting began at 9:30 in the morning on Tuesday April 25 and ended at 3:30 that afternoon.  Thereafter, the District and SCTA reconvened mediation at 5:00 p.m. until about 8:00 p.m.  The conversations throughout the day focused on costing and trying to reach consensus on what 1% in salary compensation is and how it’s calculated.  While there continues to be a gap between the Parties, there was small progress made.  The District also agreed to another costing meeting on Wednesday May 3, from 1:00-3:30 p.m. with the small group and reconvening mediation for a third meeting at 4:00 p.m. with the larger group. 

March 9, 2017

The District and SCTA held their sixteenth meeting on March 9, 2017 to continue negotiations for a successor contract.  This meeting was held at the SCTA by prior agreement to rotate locations.  The District began by sharing its desire to work collaboratively with SCTA’s negotiations team to reach a fair and equitable agreement that protects the interests of students, parents/guardians, unit members, and the District.  The District requested SCTA’s agreement to participate in the CECHCR Project’s health benefits analysis to identify savings by joining alternative pools while maintaining the same levels of coverage with no cost to unit members.  All other units have agreed – SCTA again refused.  The District continued by reiterating its prior and new proposals listed below.  The District also presented the attached salary schedules which include the District’s proposed salary increases:

For 2016-17:

  • 2% increase to salary schedule retroactive to July 1, 2016 for all unit members.
  • $10,000 bonus retroactive to July 1, 2016 for those hired for the 2016-17 school year and for new hires thereafter, to attract and retain Special Education, Science, hard to fill foreign language/immersion and Math teachers, and Nurses.  Payments to eligible unit members will be split over four years at $1,250 in each of the first two years, $2,500 in the third year, and the final $5,000 paid at end of fourth school year.  (Eligibility based on subject matter credential and assignment.)
  • $552 increase in stipends for Athletic Directors (move from Category B to Category A) and additional per diem compensation equivalent to one prep period.
  • All special day class teachers as defined by Special Education shall be provided preparation time equal to the preparation time provided other teachers in their school.

For 2017-18:

  • 4% increase to salary schedule for all unit members effective July 1, 2017 (based entirely on savings realized from SCTA’s participation in CalPERS or other health benefits pool through CECHCR Project with no change in health benefit coverage and no out-of-pocket to unit members)
  • [NEW] OR use the 4% increase to create a more competitive salary schedule. (See attached)
  • [NEW] Increase the current Doctorate stipend from $1,161 to $3,000.
  • Unlimited years of experience credited to new hires for placement on salary schedule effective July 1, 2017. 
  • Unlimited years of experience credited to current unit members for placement on salary schedule prospectively, i.e. current unit members will be credited for all years of experience as of July 1, 2017 and placed at applicable higher step moving forward.
  • Add up to an additional 20 FTE of Speech, Language, and Hearing Specialist to reduce caseloads to 55 students.
  • District will annually contribute amount equal to approximately 1.5% or more of total payroll for the Association to be placed in the jointly administered GASB fund (OPEB), subject to available funding.  (The District currently budgeted approximately $3 million for the 2017-18 school year.)

All remaining savings realized from joining CalPERS or other health benefits pool through CECHCR Project will be used to fund additional priorities as mutually agreed with SCTA, which may include, but not be limited to:

  • Art and Music
  • Athletic Director Prep
  • Assistant Athletic Director
  • Counselors
  • Class Size
  • Department Chair Leads 
  • Elementary Prep
  • Mentor Teachers
  • Money for Extra Duty Sections
  • Nurses
  • Program Specialists
  • School Psychologists

SCTA rejected the District’s proposals and stated their desire to declare impasse.  The District disagreed and reiterated its desire to continue negotiations.  SCTA refused and cancelled the parties’ previously agreed negotiation dates of March 14 and March 23, 2017.

The District is ready and willing to continue negotiations with SCTA.

February 22, 2017

The District and SCTA held their fifteenth meeting on February 22, 2017 to continue negotiations for a successor contract. This meeting was held at the SCTA by prior agreement to rotate locations. The District began by reiterating its proposals which include:

For 2016-17:

  • 2% increase to salary schedule retroactive to July 1, 2016 for all unit members.
  • $10,000 bonus retroactive to July 1, 2016 for those hired for the 2016-17 school year and for new hires thereafter, to attract and retain Special Education, Science, hard to fill foreign language/immersion and Math teachers, and Nurses.  Payments to eligible unit members will be split over four years at $1,250 in each of the first two years, $2,500 in the third year, and the final $5,000 paid at end of fourth school year.  (Eligibility based on subject matter credential and assignment.)
  • $552 increase in stipends for Athletic Directors (move from Category B to Category A) and additional per diem compensation equivalent to one prep period.
  • All special day class teachers as defined by Special Education shall be provided preparation time equal to the preparation time provided other teachers in their school.

For 2017-18:

  • 4% increase to salary schedule for all unit members effective July 1, 2017 (based entirely on savings realized from SCTA’s participation in CalPERS or other health benefits pool through CECHCR Project with no change in health benefit coverage and no out-of-pocket to unit members)
  • Unlimited years of experience credited to new hires for placement on salary schedule effective July 1, 2017. 
  • Unlimited years of experience credited to current unit members for placement on salary schedule prospectively, i.e. current unit members will be credited for all years of experience as of July 1, 2017 and placed at applicable higher step moving forward.
  • Add up to an additional 20 FTE of Speech, Language, and Hearing Specialist to reduce caseloads to 55 students.
  • District will annually contribute amount equal to approximately 1.5% or more of total payroll for the Association to be placed in the jointly administered GASB fund (OPEB), subject to available funding.  (The District currently budgeted approximately $3 million for the 2017-18 school year.)
  • All remaining savings realized from joining CalPERS or other health benefits pool through CECHCR Project will be used to fund additional priorities as mutually agreed with SCTA, which may include, but not be limited to:
    • Art and Music
    • Athletic Director Prep
    • Assistant Athletic Director
    • Counselors
    • Class Size
    • Department Chair Leads 
    • Elementary Prep
    • Mentor Teachers
    • Money for Extra Duty Sections
    • Nurses
    • Program Specialists
    • School Psychologists

SCTA agreed in part with the District’s proposal to allow unlimited years of experience for current unit members in the 2017-18 school year.  SCTA rejected all other District proposals. 

The District and SCTA will reconvene negotiations at SCTA on March 9.

February 15, 2017

The District and SCTA held their fourteenth meeting on February 15, 2017 to continue negotiations for a successor contract.  This meeting was held at the Serna Center by prior agreement to rotate locations.  The District began by presenting its proposals which include:

For 2016-17:   

  • 2% increase to salary schedule retroactive to July 1, 2016 for all unit members.
  • $10,000 bonus retroactive to July 1, 2016 for those hired for the 2016-17 school year and for new hires thereafter, to attract and retain Special Education, Science, hard to fill foreign language/immersion and Math teachers, and Nurses.  Payments to eligible unit members will be split over four years at $1,250 in each of the first two years, $2,500 in the third year, and the final $5,000 paid at end of fourth school year.  (Eligibility based on subject matter credential and assignment.)
  • $552 increase in stipends for Athletic Directors (move from Category B to Category A) and additional per diem compensation equivalent to one prep period.
  • All special day class teachers as defined by Special Education shall be provided preparation time equal to the preparation time provided other teachers in their school.

For 2017-18:

  • 4% increase to salary schedule for all unit members effective July 1, 2017 (based entirely on savings realized from SCTA’s participation in CalPERS or other health benefits pool through CECHCR Project with no change in health benefit coverage and no out-of-pocket to unit members)
  • Unlimited years of experience credited to new hires for placement on salary schedule effective July 1, 2017. 
  • Unlimited years of experience credited to current unit members for placement on salary schedule prospectively, i.e. current unit members will be credited for all years of experience as of July 1, 2017 and placed at applicable higher step moving forward.
  • Speech, Language, and Hearing Specialist caseloads reduced to 55 students.
  • District will annually contribute amount equal to approximately 1.5% or more of total payroll for the Association to be placed in the jointly administered GASB fund (OPEB), subject to available funding.  (The District currently budgeted approximately $3 million for the 2017-18 school year.)
  • All remaining savings realized from joining CalPERS or other health benefits pool through CECHCR Project will be used to fund additional priorities as mutually agreed with SCTA, which may include, but not be limited to:
    • Art and Music
    • Athletic Director Prep
    • Assistant Athletic Director
    • Counselors
    • Class Size
    • Department Chair Leads 
    • Elementary Prep
    • Mentor Teachers
    • Money for Extra Duty Sections
    • Nurses
    • Program Specialists
    • School Psychologists

The District and SCTA will reconvene negotiations at SCTA on February 22.

January 27, 2017

No Decision Reached On Start of School for 17/18

SCUSD values its many teachers and their commitment to the students and families we serve.  The district also recognizes that our teachers play an integral role in preparing our students for college and career readiness.  For these reasons, we are committed to working collaboratively with the Sacramento City Teachers Association (SCTA) Leadership Team to reach a fair and equitable agreement that protects the interests of students, parents/guardians, teachers and the district.

The district’s leadership team is working diligently in good faith to negotiate a new labor contract with SCTA’s Leadership. The bargaining teams have already met eleven times. The 12th meeting with SCTA on Tuesday night did not go well. Less than 45 minutes into a planned three-hour bargaining session, the union representatives walked out of the talks.

The district began by presenting a proposed meeting agenda that called for discussing the 2017-18 and 2018-19 school calendars first and then moving on to the district’s compensation proposals and responses. The proposed calendars will move the first day of school to mid-August to benefit students and families. This is more in alignment with other school districts in our area. In calls to the district office, parents and staff have been increasingly concerned about when school will open next year so they can make plans accordingly.

The district presented the calendars to SCTA’s Leadership in November and requested their response in December, but SCTA refused to discuss the matter.  It is crucial that the calendar is set so parents can make informed enrollment choices. The change also benefits both elementary and high school students by providing more instructional time leading up to required state testing and advanced placement/college entrance exams.  The change also benefits families by rescheduling semesters to end and start before and after the Winter Break, and frees up time for teens interested in seeking summer jobs.  This will also help the district in its efforts to recruit new teachers by clarifying the work year.

The district expressed its desire to negotiate the calendar at the table and SCTA Leadership requested a brief private caucus. SCTA Leadership returned and said they had no interest in discussing the calendar.  The district then asked for a brief caucus, at which time SCTA Leadership stated that if the district’s team was not back in five minutes they would leave. When the district’s team returned after 10 minutes in closed session, SCTA was gone.

The district’s bargaining team spent countless hours of valuable staff time over the Winter Break analyzing the budget and preparing a compensation proposal and counterproposals for this meeting.  The team repeatedly stated it was prepared to pass that information to SCTA’s Leadership during the meeting and was disappointed that SCTA’s Leadership was unwilling to discuss the calendar before launching into a protracted discussion about the district budget factors and compensation proposal.

The district’s bargaining team is very disheartened by SCTA Leadership’s refusal to negotiate the calendar which is in the best interests of students, families and other stakeholders. An agreement about teacher compensation can always be retroactive. An agreement on the calendar and work year cannot be made retroactive.

The district appreciates its dedicated teachers and staff, and is optimistic that both sides will resolve this issue in earnest.  Accordingly, the District and SCTA will reconvene negotiations on Monday, January 30.

December 19, 2016

The district and SCTA held their tenth meeting on December 19 to continue negotiations for a successor contract. This meeting was held again at SCTA by prior agreement to skip one rotation of locations. 

The district presented its counterproposal for Article 11 (Safety Concerns) which proposes new language to address restorative practices that benefits students and families. Specifically, the district’s proposal seeks to develop a site restorative practices and equity team consisting of teachers, school administrators, students and parents/members of the community. The equity teams would assist with identifying needs at individual sites supported with resources from the Equity Office. The district also presented its counterproposals for Article 8 (Transfers) and Article 9 (Leaves).

The district is currently reviewing SCTA’s January 12 fiscal proposal which requests sizeable increases in compensation, as well as other items. The district is conducting a total “cost out” of each request to determine the potential financial impact to the district, and its programs and services for students and families.      

The district and SCTA will reconvene negotiations on December 21 at the Serna Center.  

December 12, 2016

The district and SCTA held their ninth meeting on December 12 to continue negotiations for a successor contract. This meeting was held at SCTA by prior agreement to rotate locations. 

The district presented its proposals for Article 9 (Leaves) and Article 25 (Successor Agreement), in addition to presenting counterproposals for Article 7 (Assignments), Article 8 (Transfers), and Article 11 (Safety Concerns). SCTA presented its proposals for Article 9 (Leaves), Article 12 (Compensation), Article 13 (Employee Benefits), Article 15 (Substitutes), and a new article to replace Appendix D (Special Education). 

The district and SCTA reached a Tentative Agreement on Article 7 (Assignments), and mutually agreed to keep the current contract language for Article 19 District Rights, Article 22 Professional Growth, and Article 23 Classroom Teacher Instructional Improvement Program.  To date, the District and SCTA have reached tentative and/or mutual agreements on 13 articles of the successor contract. 

The District is currently reviewing SCTA’s fiscal proposals with the goal of reaching a fair and equitable agreement that protects the interests of students, parents/guardians, unit members, and the District.    

The District and SCTA will reconvene negotiations on December 19 at SCTA.

November 30, 2016

The district and SCTA held their eighth meeting on November 30 to continue negotiations for a successor contract. This meeting was held at the Serna Center by prior agreement to rotate locations. 

SCTA presented its counterproposal to Article 8 (Transfers). The district is currently reviewing that counterproposal to ensure compliance with a recent law which prohibits granting transfer priority to in-district teachers over outside applicants after April 15 in any school year.

The district presented its counterproposals to Article 7 (Assignments), Article 11 (Safety Concerns), and Article 24 (Site-Based Decision Making).  The district and SCTA mutually agreed to keep the current contract language for Article 16 (Liaison Committee) and Article 21 (Organizational Security). 

The district also presented SCTA with draft calendar proposals for the 2017-18 and 2018-19 school years.

The district and SCTA will reconvene negotiations on December 12 at SCTA.

November 28, 2016

The district and SCTA held their seventh meeting on November 29 to continue negotiations for a successor contract. This meeting was held at SCTA’s office, per the agreement to rotate locations.

The district and SCTA each passed conceptual proposals regarding special education and Appendix D in the current contract. The district’s proposal includes updating the contract to ensure compliance with legal requirements in serving students with special needs and eliminating Appendix D. The district’s proposal also provides paid training to general education teachers that serve special needs students, which will benefit all students served.

The district raised concerns with SCTA’s proposal which included a requirement that a mandatory meeting be held with a teacher before any incoming special needs students can be included in the class. The district pointed out that such a requirement is inconsistent with the law.

The district and SCTA will reconvene negotiations on November 30 at the Serna Center. 

November 14, 2016

The district and SCTA held their sixth meeting on November 14 to continue negotiations for a successor contract. This meeting was held at the Serna Center by prior agreement to rotate locations. 

The district and SCTA signed Tentative Agreements for Article 3 (Effect of Agreement), Article 6 (Evaluations), and Article 10 (Personnel Files). The district also presented its proposal to revise and update Article 14 (Personal and Academic Freedom), consistent with Board policies/regulations. 

SCTA rejected the district’s proposal to revise Article 24 (Site-Based Decision Making), which included the establishment of a Collaborative Assessment Team to support teaching and learning for all of our students by creating a comprehensive and balanced assessment system.

SCTA also rejected the district’s proposal to establish a Visual and Performing Arts Advisory Committee to draft a Strategic Arts Plan to increase access to the Visual and Performing Arts (Art, Music, Theatre, and Dance) at all SCUSD schools. SCTA did not present any new proposals.

The district also proposed to schedule a meeting with the CECHCR Project to receive preliminary information of their study of district health benefits plans to identify potential savings by reducing costs. SCTA stated its preference to hold a telephone conference but was “open” to an in-person meeting with the district and project coordinator. The District will work with the project and SCTA to schedule that important meeting.

The district and SCTA will reconvene negotiations on November 28 at SCTA.

November 9, 2016

The district and SCTA held their fifth meeting on November 9 to continue negotiations for a successor contract. This meeting was held at SCTA by prior agreement to rotate locations. 

The district reported that the CECHCR Project study of district health benefits plans, to identify potential savings by reducing costs, is moving forward as planned. All necessary information has been released for the study and the project’s coordinator has proposed dates to present their initial analysis to SCTA.

The district presented its counterproposals to SCTA regarding Articles 6 (Evaluations) and 7 (Assignments). The district presented its proposals for Articles 3 (Effect of Agreement) and 10 (Personnel Files). The district also presented its proposal to revise Article 24 (Site Based Decision Making), to focus on establishing a framework for collaborative decision making that benefits our students.

The district’s proposal includes the establishment of a Collaborative Assessment Team to support teaching and learning for all of our students by creating a comprehensive and balanced assessment system. The district’s proposal also includes the establishment of a Visual and Performing Arts Advisory Committee to draft a Strategic Arts Plan to increase access to the Visual and Performing Arts (Art, Music, Theatre, and Dance) at all SCUSD schools.

SCTA did not present any new proposals.

The district and SCTA will reconvene negotiations on November 14 at the Serna Center. 

November 2, 2016

The District and SCTA held their fourth meeting on November 2 to continue negotiations for a successor contract.  This meeting was held at the Serna Center by prior agreement to rotate locations. 

The District presented its counter-proposals to SCTA regarding Articles 4 Grievance Procedure and 6 Evaluations. The District presented its proposals for Articles 8 Transfers and 11 Safety Concerns. The District and SCTA also reached a tentative agreement on Article 4 Grievance Procedure which will help to resolve grievances more efficiently. 

Specifically, the new language extends the time period for holding a Level 1 meeting from 10 working days to 15 working days, and establishes two fixed dates twice a month for such meetings. The signing of this tentative agreement was followed with jubilant applause by all in attendance.

The District and SCTA will reconvene negotiations on November 9 at SCTA.

October 26, 2016

The district and SCTA held their third meeting on October 26 to continue negotiations for a successor contract. This meeting was held at SCTA by prior agreement to rotate locations. 

The district presented its counterproposals to SCTA regarding Articles 1, 2, and 18. The District and SCTA also tentatively agreed to new language in Articles 1 and 2, as well as a new cover page, preamble, and to keep Article 26 “as is” with the contract’s duration to be added at a later date. SCTA presented its proposals for Articles 5 and 7, which the district is reviewing. 

The district and SCTA will reconvene negotiations on November 2 at the Serna Center. 

October 17, 2016

The district and SCTA held their second meeting on October 17, 2016, to continue negotiations for a successor contract, at the district office. The District presented SCTA with a proposed agenda to guide the process which included:

  • Ground Rules/Norms;
  • Minutes;
  • CECHCR Project Update;
  • SCTA 2016-17 Proposals/District Response; and
  • Confirm/Set Future Dates

The district presented a revised proposal of five condensed ground rules which includes negotiating without personal attacks; teams having up to “60” members during after-work hours, and up to “12” members during work hours, without the general public; and that all proposals be presented in writing.

SCTA did not agree or object to the ground rules. Although SCTA continues to sidestep this issue, the parties will need to negotiate a reasonable number of representatives for negotiations held during work hours to reach a timely agreement. To date, SCTA has only agreed to meet during after-work hours. The district reserved its right to continue negotiating ground rules before moving forward with this meeting.

The district proposed the parties keep mutual minutes as a collaborative record of each meeting. SCTA refused this proposal.

The district reported that the CECHCR Project study of district health benefits plans, to identify potential savings by reducing costs, is moving forward as planned. 

The district presented its counter-proposals to SCTA which included utilizing mediation as a pre-arbitration step to resolve grievances amicably. Currently, mediation is available in the contract as a voluntary option. Mediation utilizes the assistance of a state mediator to resolve differences at no cost to the district or SCTA, which can result in a binding agreement between the grievant and employer.

Unfortunately, SCTA consistently disregards mediation opting instead to prosecute grievances at arbitration. Arbitration is a costly process that involves a formal hearing with lawyers, court reporters, etc. Arbitration does not foster collaborative resolution of grievances and often results in unnecessary delay as both parties are left waiting for the arbitrator’s decision which can take up to six months or more after the hearing. SCTA rejected the district’s proposal.

The district also proposed to establish a committee comprised of teachers, substitute teachers and administrators to develop evaluation tools and procedures for evaluating these educators. SCTA shared its interest in discussing this proposal further.

The district and SCTA will reconvene negotiations on October 26. 

October 11, 2016

The district and the Sacramento City Teachers Association met on October 11 to begin negotiations for a successor contract. This was the first negotiations session and was held at SCTA’s office according to a prior agreement to rotate locations for each meeting.

The district presented SCTA a proposed agenda, and its proposal for ground rules (norms) to establish a mutually agreeable framework during negotiations. The district notified SCTA prior to this session of its intent to present written ground rules and invited SCTA to present their own proposal. However, SCTA rejected the district’s proposal and did not provide any written counter-proposal for ground rules.

The district was notified prior to this session of SCTA’s desire to expand the size of their negotiations team to “60 members” comprised of unit leadership. However, the 60 were not all comprised of unit leadership but also included non-employee members of the public. The district expressed its concern that by law negotiations are not open to the public and could not move forward without approval from the Board. The District reiterated this concern when receiving SCTA’s proposal information.

The district invited SCTA to provide a written proposal for ground rules, and for negotiations that involve members of the public, at their next meeting on October 17.

OTHER BARGAINING NEWS: DISTRICT AND UNITED PROFESSIONAL EDUCATORS (UPE) REACH AGREEMENT ON FINAL CONTRACT 

In our effort to make investments to provide students with an equal opportunity to graduate with the greatest number of postsecondary choices from the widest array of options, we are pleased to share that at the September 7th Board of Education meeting, the Board voted unanimously in support of ratifying a three-year agreement with United Professional Educators—a critical labor partner in helping us work toward our goals for improving student achievement.

UPE represents our district’s Principals, Assistant Principals and other administrative leaders. They play a leadership role in ensuring the Superintendent’s vision for students in Sac City Unified is implemented at each school site. As part of the agreement, UPE members have agreed to begin contributing payment toward the district’s $600 million unfunded liability for retiree benefits. If the unfunded liability debt continues to grow, it will limit the amount of resources available to fulfill the needs of our students. UPE recognizes the importance of paying down our unfunded liability so we can dedicate as many resources as possible to the classroom. As such, UPE members over the course of the next three years will begin paying $500 per year toward the unfunded liability.

UPE has also agreed to help the district further reduce costs by decreasing its members’ number of vacation days from 22 to 5 per year. New UPE members will receive 0 vacation days per year. This reduction in vacation days will help the district save an estimated $1.2 million.

UPE has also agreed to work with the district to establish a new evaluation system for its members, which will serve as a tool for ensuring that Principals, Assistant Principals and other administrative leaders are held accountable for increasing student achievement through the Superintendent’s vision for continuous improvement.

In exchange, the district will now cover 80 percent of UPE members’ family health benefits. The district previously contributed 0 percent toward UPE members’ family health benefits. The district will also make the salary schedule for UPE members more competitive with those of surrounding districts. This change in the salary schedule represents an approximately 3 percent average salary increase for UPE members for one year. UPE has agreed to 0 percent increases for 2017-18 and 2018-19. Click here to download a copy of the full agreement

The district appreciates UPE’s willingness to work toward a win-win agreement. This agreement will help the district maintain fiscal solvency. It will also help the district retain and attract the key talent necessary to lead our schools in improving student achievement with a focus on implementing Sac City’s vision of giving all students an equal opportunity to graduate with the greatest number of postsecondary choices from the widest array of options.