Saturday, October 27, 2012

Negotiation Highlights - August 29, 2012

GEA-GSD Negotiaions 
August 29, 2012

Negotiations between the Garvey School District and the Garvey Education Association continued on August 29, 2012. The session that had been scheduled for August 3rd was cancelled by the District.

The Association began the session by reminding the District of the offer to take two furlough days and to create a “staff development day” to relieve the general fund. A formal proposal was given to the District on July 5, 2012.

The Association then offered two additional furlough days, for a total of four.
  • The District is interested in removing the “family plan” for GEA members and implementing a hard cap of $9500 for all GEA members.
  • The Association offered the two extra furlough days to cover the cost to the District caused by the inclusion of the “family plan” during the 2013 calendar year.
  • This would allow for a thorough discussion of medical benefits without the financial constraint caused by the “family plan.”
 The District stated it was not interested in the additional furlough days, and that maybe a mediator should come in to mediate the health benefits discussion.

The Association stated it was premature to bring in a mediator since there had been no discussion surrounding fringe benefits to this point. The Association stated its desire to discuss medical benefits in an interest based bargaining setting.

The discussion turned to the unilateral decision to change instructional minutes across the District.
  • GEA stated that a vote for furlough days which would have been a “slam dunk” in June, when it was first agreed to, would be more of a challenge since the District implemented their instructional minutes plan without any discussion with the Association.
  • GEA noted that the concept of saving money by implementing a furlough day is based on the concept that employees don’t work so the District does not have to pay them.
  • The District has implemented a plan to have the teachers work increased instructional minutes despite furlough days, essentially having teachers work more time with students for less money.
  • The Association Bargaining Team was not sure how this would be viewed by the membership.
 The Association asked for the rationale for the instructional minutes change. The District stated:

  • The District is entitled to add more minutes within the contract.
  • The Board has directed the District Team to not lower instructional minutes despite impending furlough days.
  • There is a need in the District to increase seat time for students.

GEA caucused. Upon their return:
  • The Association stated they wanted to sign the MOU for the two furlough days and the staff development day as soon a possible.
  • They asked the District if they were willing to sign today.
  • GEA also stated they would like to reconvene the Insurance Committee to start meeting with insurance carriers ASAP. The desire is to explore as many options as we can as we begin discussion on fringe benefits.

The meeting adjourned with agreement to reconvene at 1:30 PM. The District was to write the MOU Language so it could be signed.

The District subsequently contacted the Association and stated that the trigger cut calculation was no longer a flat dollar amount, and that they needed to recalculate the figures before writing the MOU.

No writing of the MOU ever occurred.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Thursday, October 11, 2012

How much is the Superintendent's pay increase costing the District?

There has been much discussion as to how much the salary increase of Dr. Sandra Johnson, in conjunction with her decision to come out of retirement after over 10 years, is costing the District.

Our calculation places the added annual cost at $42,549.63!

 If anyone in the know can explain why this is inaccurate, please let us know.

Cost to the Garvey School District General Fund. 

New Salary $170,000
Previous Salary $148,516
Net Difference $21,484

Doctoral Stipend (She was not previously receiving this stipend.)

Payment to the State Teacher's Retirement System (STRS)
Since Dr Johnson decided to come out of retirement, the District must now pay 8.25% into the pension system on Dr. Johnson's behalf. No STRS payment was being made prior to the change in the contract. An equal payment was being made to an annuity instead. The School Board decided to continue the annuity despite the new payments to STRS. The annuity is considered creditable income and the District is paying 8.25% on it as well.

Dr. Johnson's total income for STRS includes $170,000 salary, $12,722.82 annuity, $5,100 Doctoral Stipend, $5,700 car allowance.

Total income - $193,522.82.

STRS Payment = $15,965.63 (8.25% of total income $193,522.82)

$21,484 (Salary increase) + $5,100 (Doctoral Stipend) + $15,965.63 (STRS Payment) = $42,549.63

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Channel 5 Coverage of School Board Meeting - October 4, 2012

Upset parents and community members attended the School Board Meeting on October 4, 2012. The event was covered by Channel 5 news.

Channel 11 Coverage of School Board Meeting - October 4, 2012

Upset parents and community members attended the School Board Meeting on October 4, 2012. The event was covered by Channel 11 news.

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