L.A. Unified and Teachers’ Union Continue Negotiations

LOS ANGELES (Oct. 22, 2014) - Following a bargaining session earlier today, Vivian Ekchian, the Los Angeles Unified School District’s chief labor negotiator characterized the latest salary and class-size proposal from United Teachers Los Angeles as “unsustainable,” adding that if implemented it would result in severe cutbacks to key programs, resources, and personnel that would detrimentally impact students.

The proposal, which the teachers’ union formally presented on October 2, calls for a 10 percent increase in salaries for the union’s bargaining unit members effective July 1, 2014, plus more than $500 million in class-size changes.

“Our budget calculations show that the proposal would cost more than $800 million in 2015-16,” Ekchian said. “Combined with a projected $365 million deficit next year, agreeing to the union’s proposal would deal a devastating blow to the District’s educational programs.”

The union also proposed at today’s session that only teachers facing allegations of sexual misconduct, physical violence, or other serious criminal acts can be removed from classroom assignments, while teachers with performance, competence or judgment issues would be allowed to stay in the classroom. “The District will examine this proposal from the lens of our students’ safety and well-being,” Ekchian said. 

Finally, the District called for expedited bargaining sessions, noting the urgency of completing an agreement as soon as possible to provide raises to employees before winter break. The District offered to expedite salary negotiations so that they could be settled separately from the numerous non-economic issues that will take additional months to discuss. The union’s response was to meet a total of three times over the next six weeks.

The next negotiating session is scheduled for November 6.

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Contact: Lydia L. Ramos and Daryl Strickland (213) 241-6766



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