LOS ANGELES (CNS) - The Los Angeles Unified School District Board of Education voted today to offer its teachers a 6 percent salary increase and reduce class sizes at 90 schools as part of its contract with United Teachers Los Angeles, but its offer was met with anger by the teachers union.
The new offer comes two days before the district and union begin the formal mediation process.
In addition to the salary increase and reduction in class size at 15 middle and 75 elementary schools in communities with the highest needs, the district's offer also includes additional pay to teachers for taking courses in science, technology, engineering, the arts and mathematics, dual language instruction, early literacy intervention and other areas that help teachers better support their students, Haber said.
The offer will also create what the district calls a “plain language” version of the labor contract to help students, families and communities have a voice in all of the issues the contract covers, Haber said.
“Today's offer to L.A. Unified's teachers shows our commitment to helping students most in need,” Superintendent Austin Beutner said. “Our offer creates a pathway for L.A. Unified and UTLA to avoid a strike that would hurt L.A.'s most vulnerable students and families.”
The union was not pleased with the district's offer, saying the class size reduction proposal makes no difference for 90 percent of the district's schools and the district can still increase class size any ime, according to a statement from UTLA.
“Beutner's proposal does nothing to make our schools better,” said Arlene Inouye, chair of the union's bargaining team. “This is an insult to our members, to our students and to our parents. This stunt reveals he is more interested in fighting against educators at any cost than saving our school district.”
The union was angered that the proposal was sent to the Los Angeles Times and various special interest blogs before the UTLA bargaining team, the statement said.
The Public Employment Relations Board of California will oversee Thursday's mediation.
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