TALB Update: Friday, May 6, 2022 – Tentative Agreement FAQ Answers

TALB Update: Friday, May 6, 2022

Friday, May 6, 2022

Tentative Agreement – Additional FAQ’s

What is ADA?
ADA refers to Average Daily Attendance. Schools are funded based on attendance, students showing up, butts in seats. The District receives funding based on this attendance = ADA. Snapshots of ADA are reported to the state throughout the school year. Then the state distributes funding to the district based on the Average Daily Attendance. Pre-pandemic LUBSD was around 97% ADA, now, for a variety of reasons, we are experiencing less than 90% attendance. In simple terms, we are not getting the full funding of a COLA – Cost Of Living Adjustment, more like 90% of it. Bargaining the wages and benefits for our members is a challenge because most districts treat the art of budgeting as though it were a science, it is not. Districts typically present budget data as objective criteria, which in turn creates two distinct challenges. First, Districts have virtually no control over the revenue side of the budget but must live within whatever means provided by local, state and federal agencies. Second, budgeting, by necessity, involves conjecture. There is no way to predict revenue, accurately, two to three years out. A major portion of the revenue the state receives is based on progressive taxation. The rich, as they should, pay higher rates of tax on income and on capital gains. If the stock market is doing well, the coffers of the state will do well. Given the volatility of the markets, the war in Europe, costs of fuel and accelerating declining enrollment, it is anyone’s guess what revenue will “consistently” look like. The Association can and should agree we have a common interest with the district regarding finance and our joint fiduciary responsibility. 

What are a district’s “reserves”?
State law requires districts to keep a certain percent of money in a savings, dedicated for economic uncertainty. A District this size is required to have at least 2% of their budget saved. Bare in mind, 2% would not cover one payroll period for the District. Over the years the reserves have increased due to several factors. First, the hope that lessons learned, history will not repeat itself. The District was not prepared for the financial crash of 2008. There was not a sufficient reserve/savings to weather the “Great Recession”. Such hubris, we did not even have a seniority list and had to create one from scratch. The District will never be able to save enough money to avoid a layoff if we face a radical cut in school funding, but it can mitigate the number of layoffs by having sufficient reserves/savings. Last year, the state gave economic incentives for school districts to reopen for in-person instruction in spring. These incentives were delivered as “one time” money. There were infusions of “one-time” money from the state and federal government with the expectation that schools would remain open for in-person instruction 2021-22 and programs would be established to mitigate “unfinished learning”. The lion’s share of school funding comes from the state. The state budget runs from July 1 through June 30. The revenue and the budget that we are now living with was made back in June of 2021, long before the pressure of inflation started heating up. The amount of new money the District could receive for 2021-22 was a little more than 5% for COLA (Cost of Living Adjustment). Bare in mind COLA does not represent the true cost of all consumables, nor does it accurately reflect inflation. If the students do not report to class, the District does not receive the revenue. The rationale for the current “on-schedule” settlement was based on revenue the District received – (COLA X ADA). Yes, we are keenly aware that a 4.5% ongoing salary increase does not cover the costs of inflation. Last year’s state budget did not anticipate these inflationary pressures, we are bargaining with the revenue that was promised to schools for the fiscal year 2021-22 and receiving about 90%. Reserves are “one time” money. Some of the reserve is “restricted” – it can only be spent on specific programs (hiring certificated and classified personnel, tutoring, infrastructure, etc.). Some of the reserve is earmarked to settle negotiations with other employee groups – CSEA has not had a salary settlement since 2018-19. Some of the reserve is “unrestricted” – it can be used for compensation, which typically comes in “one time” off schedule payments, hence the 2.5% off schedule. Similar to moving a portion of your savings to your discretionary spending account. The key to understanding “one time” money is that it is “one time”. Our brothers and sisters in CSEA tried to make the argument during “mediation” and “fact finding” that reserves could be used for ongoing expenses, like an on schedule raise. CSEA had proposed a 7% ongoing raise for 2019-20 based on the District’s reserves. The “fact finder” did not agree and CSEA ended up settling on the exact same raises we negotiated for 2019-20. (Link for CSEA Fact Finding Report)

Will the state address inflation in the upcoming state budget effective July 1, 2022?
State legislators are currently developing a budget. Governor Newsom will discuss a May revise – a projection of state revenues and proposed spending by mid May. Proposals in the Department of Education are being debated right now to offset inflation and provide more funds for schools, 2022-23, that ideally addresses inflation. In early June, the bargaining process will begin again for compensation and contract language for the 2022-23 school year. The current tentative compensation package is for the year we’ve practically finished, 2021-22.

Why does the district want full day Transitional Kindergarten and Kindergarten? 
LBUSD has been interested in full day TK and full day K for a long time. There have been numerous pilot programs; extended day, full day, modified day, etc. The vast majority of surrounding school districts have full day TK & K, to the extent we are losing enrollment to other school districts. In negotiations we had lengthy conversations about these programs to the degree there are two different MOU’s to provide support for the implementation of these programs. This will be a dramatic shift. A revision of Kindergarten from what has historically been the “Long Beach Way”. If you are experiencing anxiety and have concerns, you may want to consider discussing the matter with your site administrator and propose a change of grade level assignment for 2022-23. In theory, Kindergarten will look different in 2023-24 after the Transitional Kindergarten students have had a full year of full day instruction. If you are interested in being on the committee that will work to address problems as they arise for 2022-23, please email Dr. Christine Kelly, TALB President at ckelly@talb.org Everyone wants full day TK & K to be a success, the District wants direct feedback during its maiden voyage. In addition, the District continues to explore the feasibility of opportunities to support this transition; adjusting schedules for the first few weeks to allow for assessments, augmenting staff support – given personnel availability, release time to visit full day classrooms, forums to discuss classroom management and effective use of new classroom furniture. 

How does the Tentative Agreement process work?
When the Bargaining Team feels it has reached the best possible agreement, the tentative agreement is sent to the Executive Board for approval for a general membership vote. It has been a long time since we’ve reached an agreement so late in the year. In order to get members remunerated as quickly as possible, there are compressed timelines. After every tentative agreement is reached and the Executive Board approves the TA, we hold a General Membership meeting before the voting begins. Before the pandemic, we would meet annually at Longfellow E.S. to discuss and answer questions the general membership may have about any of the agreements. If the tentative agreement passes by a majority vote (more than half), the Board of Education can approve the agreement on May 18 and the process for getting paid the 4.5% retroactive to July 1, 2021 can begin. 

WHO IS ON THE TALB BARGAINING TEAM?
Bargaining Chair: Corrin Hickey – Lakewood H.S., Bargaining Members: Julie McCall – Nelson M.S., John Kane – Jordan H.S., Gerry Morrison – McBride HS, Maritza Summers – Mann E.S., Kevin Quinn – Edison E.S., John Solomon – MacArthur E.S., Sybil Baldwin – CDC, Maria Garcia – Head Start & Chris Callopy – TALB Staff
 
WHAT WILL HAPPEN IF THE TALB MEMBERSHIP REJECTS THE TENTATIVE AGREEMENT?
The terms of the Tentative Agreement won’t take effect and we will return to the bargaining table and continue negotiations. The potential prospect of going through mediation and fact finding would further delay compensation until the fall or later. 
 
SHOULD I VOTE IN FAVOR OF THE TENTATIVE AGREEMENT?
Each TALB member must make their own assessment on how to vote, but we strongly encourage every member to vote. The Bargaining Team recommends a YES vote on the agreement. The TALB Executive Board recommends a YES vote on the agreement.

Click on the following links for full details:

  1. Co-Collaborative Teaching MOU
  2. Transitional Kindergarten MOU
  3. Kindergarten MOU
  4. CDC | HS – Compensation & Contract Language
  5. K-12 Compensation & Contract Language

Calendar for Ratification
 
General Membership Meetings to discuss the Tentative Agreement – Question & Answer with your bargaining team and TALB leadership at:
Longfellow E.S. on May 10, 2022 from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Longfellow E.S. 3800 Olive Ave, Long Beach 90807 – Auditorium

Voting on the Tentative Agreement Begins Wednesday May 11 through Friday May 13 @ 4:30 p.m. (Electronic Voting through Simply Voting) Voting results will be posted in the electronic newsletter on Friday, May 13

Do we have your personal e-mail? This is where your ballot to vote will be sent.
CDC – Head Start members will vote for changes in their contract.
K-12 members will vote for changes in their contract.
 
Next Steps –

  1. Tentative Agreement General Membership Meeting Q & A – Tuesday, May 10 from 4:30-5:30 (CONFIRMED @ Longfellow E.S. Auditorium)
  2. Membership Vote – Wednesday, May 11 – Friday, May 13 @ 4:30 p.m.
  3. Voting results will be released with the E-Update on Friday, May 13 (evening)

RSVP with Veronica Castillo vcastillo@talb.org for our
Member Appreciation Day


RSVP with Veronica Castillo vcastillo@talb.org for our
Member Appreciation Day


 


Retirement Workshop – In-Person @ TALB – May 26   4:30 to 6:30PM

May 26, 2022 from 4:30-6:30 p.m. TALB will be hosting a retirement seminar. This in-person workshop is limited to 60 members. Please RSVP with Veronica Castillo at vcastillo@talb.org

Can’t make the seminar?
There are many things to consider when retiring. Your first step is CalSTRS. Go to calstrs.com and create an account. The website has different tools to give a ball park estimate on your pension benefits. For more accurate data you need to make a “one on one” with a CalSTRS counselor.

Individual Benefits Planning Session

Explore your CalSTRS benefits and services with the help of a CalSTRS benefits specialist in a confidential, one-on-one setting.

  • Your personalized CalSTRS benefit estimates.
  • Beneficiary options and how to leave a lifetime benefit to your loved ones.
  • How to purchase service credit and what happens to your unused sick leave.
  • Concurrent retirement—retiring from more than one California public retirement system.
  • Considerations pertaining to health benefits, Medicare and Social Security.

For available session dates and times, simply call 800-228-5453 and select option 3.

When should I let the District know I’m going to retire?
Ideally, as soon as possible. We know that making the decision to retire can be hard and very personal. Some folks want to retire and go quietly in the night, with little or no fanfare. Others want to shout their retirement from their rooftops and dance! You can submit your retirement paperwork electronically to the District and not have it be publicly disclosed until after school is out for the summer. This helps the District plan for your replacement, but more importantly, it may help one of your colleagues avoid the unnecessary anxiety and stress of potentially being displaced/transferred from your school site. 


Zoom | Virtual Site Visits
  • A Virtual Site Visit invitation will be sent to individual members. Check your personal email for Zoom invitations.
  • Muir K-8 Virtual Site Visit 5/11 | 4:00-5:00 p.m.
  • Counselors Forum 5/12 | 4:00-5:00 p.m.
  • Membership Appreciation Day 5/13 3:00-6:00 p.m.

Beer Club
Friday, June 3 @ 4:00 p.m.
O’Connor’s Pub
4130 Paramount Blvd., Lakewood 90712
RSVP with John Solomon at jsolomon@talb.org


Next BOE Meeting is Wednesday, May 4.  School board meetings are typically livestreamed on the LBUSD YouTube Channel.

2022 Upcoming Scheduled Meetings:

  • May 18
  • June 1
  • June 22

LBUSD Board & Exec Staff Contact Info


Update your Beneficiaries
The cycle of life. Every year we have a few members pass. Your TALB/CTA/NEA membership provides a survivor’s benefit up to $6,000.00. Sadly, every now and again, we have a member pass who did not update their beneficiaries. We can only issue the benefit to the individual(s) listed on your survivor’s benefit form. Life comes at you fast. Relationships change. If you have any questions about your survivor’s benefit please call the office at 562-426-6433.


CTA Conferences & Grants
For full details and to apply for a grant, go to www.CTA.org/grants.