I would like to make sure the board is aware of TVEA’s efforts in responding to the First Interim Budget Report from December 2016.
On December 16th, I joined our Ad Hoc Budget Committee in a nearly four-hour meeting with the TVUSD Ad Hoc Budget team to begin discussion on how the reported budget deficit might be addressed. Our TVEA group demonstrated a commitment to the process by working into the dinner hour on get away day leading into Winter Break.
Then on January 4th, the first instructional day back, TVEA’s Ad Hoc Budget team joined our Bargaining group in a late afternoon meeting with TVUSD to continue this problem-solving process.
A week ago, Tuesday January 10th, TVEA conducted our 2nd Annual Site Visit Blitz. This is our effort to visit all twenty-seven sites and hold twenty minute meetings at each outside of contract hours. We do not go to the sites with the intent of persuading our members or selling them anything. We come to them with critical information and seek to begin a two-way conversation. We met with well over 500 members during their duty -free time and received some 460 written feedback slips.
This year the topic of discussion was not easy. Asking our members to potentially take on more students to shoulder a district deficit is a tough pill to swallow.
I am proud of both our team of sixteen facilitators and the hundreds of teachers and specialists we spoke with. Our members were more receptive than expected considering some of the potential adjustments. That being said, not all instructional levels were able to provide initial support to the restructuring ideas that the district had shared with TVEA.
Where do we go from here? We will continue to work overtime to meet and share ideas with TVUSD. Yet our members will need more from the district as well.
A single district communique speaking to our disadvantaged LCFF position leads our members to the following question: “What will TVUSD be cutting or eliminating to meet TVEA somewhere halfway in the road? What district positions or priorities once thought to be essential during better budgetary times might be recategorized as non-essential in this fiscal climate?
Yes, TVUSD sits in a disadvantaged LCFF position. Yet, finger pointing at the state will not change that. TVUSD must take an introspective approach in moving forward.