UTLA Submits ‘Last, Best and Final Offer’ to LAUSD

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We demand a 48-hour response from LAUSD

When UTLA declared impasse earlier this month, LAUSD officials said they would bring significant proposals to today’s bargaining. Instead, they brought a previously proposed 2% ongoing salary increase, an additional one-time 2% bonus and a $500 stipend for materials and supplies. The UTLA bargaining team deemed this insulting, quickly reaffirmed negotiations are at a deadlock and gave the district 48 hours to respond to UTLA’s package proposal in a last, best and final offer.

“Our working conditions are our students’ learning conditions. We must continue to fight for a sustainable future, yet we don’t have a partner in the very school district we are trying to save,” said Arlene Inouye, Chair of UTLA’s Bargaining Team. “We have been pushing for real change, they are keeping the status quo.”

 

Some outstanding key issues:

  • Class Size Matters. LAUSD gave no proposals to reduce class size.  LAUSD has some of the highest class sizes in the nation, yet refuses to eliminate section 1.5 of the contract, which allows the district to ignore class size caps.

  • Fund Our Schools. LAUSD gave no proposals to address funding issues. California is the richest state in the nation, yet ranks 43 out of 50 in per-pupil funding.

  • Support Community Schools. LAUSD gave no proposals to fund Community Schools. Community schools meet the needs in the surrounding community, including wrap-around services, broadened curriculum and parent engagement.

  • Less Testing & More Teaching. LAUSD gave no proposals to address overtesting. Our kids are being overtested. Their teachers should have more discretion over what and when standardized assessments are given.

  • End the Privatization Drain. LAUSD gave no proposals for reasonable charter accountability and co-location measures. LAUSD refuses to address the $590 million lost to the unchecked expansion of charter schools each year.

Despite the need to look at factors that impact student health, safety and well-being, LAUSD has refused to address our common good proposals. In recognition of legal constraints tied to the “scope of bargaining,” UTLA has withdrawn proposals that are not mandatory subjects of bargaining. Nonetheless, we will continue to work diligently with parents and students for these improvements we think are vital to overall student success.

Last Thursday, July 19, LAUSD Supt. Austin Beutner told a room of business leaders at a Valley Industry and Commerce Association forum at the Sportsmen’s Lodge in Studio City that if things don’t change, ‘by 2021 we will be no more.’ Read the entire LA Daily News story here.

Beutner also said the loss of $590 million to charter school expansion is a “distracting shiny ball” and not a real concern. That amounts to $4,950 per student per year.

“That is much, much more than a ‘distracting shiny ball,’” said UTLA President Alex Caputo-Pearl. “It amounts to robbing our students of educational resources and programs. That funding could mean more nurses, more librarians, more counselors, more arts, sports and music programs.”

“The real ‘distraction’ is that anti-union, pro-privatization ideologues are currently running the school district, and they are setting us up for failure, not success,” Caputo-Pearl said. “Regardless, UTLA remains steadfast in our fight for a better future for all students. We continue to fight for the heart and soul of public education in LA.”

Click here for more info on bargaining proposals.

 

UTLA, the nation’s second-largest teachers’ union local, represents more than 35,000 teachers and health & human services professionals in district and charter schools in LAUSD.