In support of our bargaining team and membership I am to no surprise suggesting a “YES” vote on this item.
While this agreement may not plug every gap in our salary and benefits compared to neighboring districts, it does address two key areas, one mitigating the increased cost of health insurance, and the other enhancing longevity for career employees.
I would like to applaud the work of the TVUSD Bargaining team led by Ray Johnson as well as our TVEA team which committed two vacation days off the teacher calendar to bargaining.
As I begin a second term, I have reflected on the level of consensus within TVEA and between TVEA and TVUSD compared to when I took office two years ago.
Two years ago in July 2014, TVEA members were without a current contract since June 2013, a period of thirteen months. Negotiations on a new contract had started back in January 2013, eighteen months previous. TVEA members decidedly voted down a May 2014 tentative agreement by a 64% to 36 % margin, the first and only time in our history a tentative agreement had been voted down. There was discord, upheaval, and a lack of consensus between TVEA and TVUSD. We could not even agree on which state budget numbers to utilize in making projections.
I am pleased and proud that since this period we have successfully signed and ratified four TVEA-TVUSD tentative agreements in the last twenty- four months.
October 2014- 85%
May 2015- 97%
December 2015- 90%
June 2016- 95 %
These four agreements over a two-year period demonstrate that we have built a high level of consensus among our membership (92 % average YES vote) and that members believe we are negotiating in their best interest.
Have there been occasional setbacks and misunderstandings between TVEA and TVUSD over the last twenty- four months? SURE…
Yet despite hitting a few potholes and roadblocks, we believe the people and structures are in place to continue this aforementioned success both in contract negotiations and other spheres impacting both teachers and students.