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TVEA Spotlight August 23, 2023

I am honored to represent the current 1312 members in TVEA and growing everyday.

Our union is comprised of the certificated employees throughout the district including teachers, SLP, psychologist, social workers, counselors, special education professionals. We all care about the state of our district, the teaching and learning conditions throughout the district, and the ability of our families to earn a decent living in Temecula.

As an organization, there are 4 officers elected at large, 9 additional members of the Executive Board elected through their role, and over 70 members of Leadership Council elected from physical sites or job positions.

This union is everyone’s union. It allows us to create structures to work with district administration to problem-solve, represent educator’s role in the learning environment, add our voice in the implementation of programs that follow the coordinated bargaining agreement to encourage work life balance, and bargain for a prevailing wage in the region that keeps us competitive and allows our members families to meet their goals.

This Union of educators, will embrace all 106 new hires (as of today) to guide and coach them through the art of educating students. Developing classroom management skills. Adapting to the culture of the site and the district and navigating the contract to ensure success. This Union of Educators also welcomes about a dozen TVUSD alumni that will now serve as colleagues, some at a site they attended.

This Union of Educators relies on each other to develop lessons, share stories, support each other through difficult days and to bring forward valuable solutions to classrooms, campuses, and the district. When you walk onto a campus you see our Union of Educators. Our educators curate the CA standards and frameworks to develop engaging lessons, provide supports for students to ensure access to the curriculum make TVUSD the top performing district that it is.

This Union of Educators has millenniums of experience to deal with any situation.

Dr. Komrosky as a CTA member, do you recognize the importance? Do you all recognize the passion our educators have to ensure that students prepare for any opportunity that may open to them in the future?

That is what I love about our union. The willingness to give part of yourself, for the benefit of the students of a community.

I’ll provide the example of a classroom.

TVUSD has brought on slew of new educators to classrooms across the district. You the board, provide them with chairs, desks, and walls. If you are lucky you get an adult teacher chair. Our Union of Educators bring those rooms to life. They inject their passion into creating welcoming environments, effective working groups. And that is all done with personal expenses that could go to their families and expenses.

Our educators should not shoulder the financial burden for the benefit of the district! Parents, you should know that most items in that classroom are purchased by that educator. Sites may provide $100-$300 including the budget to make copies! Those amounts have only slightly increased in the 20 years I have taught here.

We are doing our part. Our Union of educators has a 3 year history of providing classroom grants to new members. This year, TVEA offered $25 to any new member joining the district. CTA, is supporting with $300 to any first year teacher who joins. That is generous! All made possible by our Union of Educators.

In these short weeks, our Union of Educators was able to finalize MOUs to start an Agricultural program at TVHS, create an Academic Calendar for Rancho Vista HS, create an opportunity to offer certificated staff with health insurance from a family member a way to save money monthly!

Elementary and middle school stipends were reinstated, an amount that was agreed to last year, had sticking points, but individuals will have only duties limited to what they were already doing, while participating in Site Leadership meetings. We hope that a true representation of a staff is incorporated in these committees in future iterations by allowing groups to elect their representation.

Our Union of Educators are putting in a massive effort to open a new campus - Summit Academy and move HIIA to a new campus centrally located in the district.

On the first day you may have seen our Union of Educators welcoming students and families to campuses. Helping students get acclimated to new campuses and classrooms. Reaching out to parents with opportunities to be involved and strengthen the school parent connection. Providing an overview of the supports and communication channels during Back to School Nights to help parents advocate for their child’s education. Trust me, our Union of Educators wants parents to be involved!

Who is this Union of Educators? TVEA! All of us. We advocate to ensure that services are delivered to students efficiently to the highest rigor possible. To prepare students for any opportunity that may open to them.

We have more to address.

It is our expectation that the collaborative effort continues with HRD to reassign new teachers with probationary contracts as early in the fall as possible. These employees have committed to the children of this community by leaving jobs and moving to the area. TVUSD needs to commit to them! It is horrible to carry an undue amount of educators on temporary contracts, losing their benefits and pay during the summer months.

We also expect TVUSD to come to the table to discuss a fair prevailing wage for the employees of this district. We have dates on the calendar for our bargaining teams to meet and continue the process started in May of last year, before it was derailed with the firing of the Superintendent bringing instability to the districts leadership.

That delayed our employees access to a cost of living adjustment provided by the state in the state funding of LCAP funds. That increase was 8.22%. The previous year, after we settled, the state increased the base formula by 2%.

The employees of TVUSD do not deserve to wait as you march to pass national political solution in this district. The employees should not fear that the reserve fund or the increased funding is spent on hiring additional firms to help the Trustees chase the next national headline. It happened to substitutes. In the winter a statement was made to bring the substitute issue back. Where did it evaporate to? Oh, I know.

Your employees deserve better!

In solidarity, Edgar Díaz


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