Press release from SFUSD:
May 28, 2010 (San Francisco) - Today, the members of the United Educators of San Francisco officially ratified the recent contract agreement with the San Francisco Unified School District. The agreement provides $39 million in savings to SFUSD over the next two years, and saves hundreds of teacher and paraprofessional jobs. It was unanimously passed by the SF Board of Education at their meeting on May 25, 2010.
“The teachers and paraprofessionals of SFUSD have courageously stepped up for our city’s school children,” says UESF President Dennis Kelly. “But their sacrifice alone will not be enough. The people of the state of California must realize that any further cuts to our public
education and essential public services will spell disaster for our kids.”
The agreement comes as SFUSD is facing a projected $113 million budget shortfall over the next two school years, prompted by an unprecedented disinvestment in public education by the state of California – over $17 billion the past two years. That deficit may in fact expand, as the California Teachers Association estimates that the Governor’s May Revise budget could cut up to $3 billion more from K-12 education.
With this agreement, the district will be able to reduce the amount of teacher layoffs to 199, and to significantly reduce the number of paraprofessional layoffs as well. Due to anticipated budget cuts, SFUSD had to issue preliminary layoff notices to 701 teachers and other certificated staff and 101 paraprofessionals. Prior to a ratified agreement with the teachers union, final layoff notices were issued to 350 certificated staff by the May 15 State deadline. Today the district will begin sending out rescission notices to 149 teachers. Both the union and the district hope that the remaining teachers and paraprofessionals who received a layoff notice could ultimately be brought back before the beginning of the next school year.
“I am grateful to the teachers and paraprofessionals for agreeing to help us close the deficit gap and keep our district solvent,” says Superintendent Carlos Garcia. “At a time when our students need more services, our State is forcing us to provide less. We are doing the best we can to stay focused on our priorities and work toward a long term solution to our broken school finance system.”
The agreement includes four furlough days to be taken during the 2010-2011 school year. The total number of instructional days next year will be 176 instead of the 180 that has been in place.
The superintendent intends to close down the district on these four days, resulting in cost savings of $8.6 million as all staff, teachers, administrators and support personnel would not be paid on these days. The specific furlough days were just finalized between the teachers union and district. The revised instructional calendar will be reviewed by the Board of Education next week.
The proposal calls for schools and support offices to be shut down on November 1, February 4, March 25, and April 25 of the 2010-2011 school year.