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Pleasanton school board expected to approve 2013-14 budget of $115 million tonight

Original post made on Jun 18, 2013

The Pleasanton School Board is expected to approve a $115 million budget for the upcoming school year that includes more than $750,000 in deficit spending in its meeting tonight.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, June 18, 2013, 7:43 AM

Comments (16)

Posted by wow, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 18, 2013 at 11:06 am

Just wow. Class sizes still at 30-1 for K, 2 and 3 and no reading specialists, but 1.3 million for new stipends, bonuses and other compensation (in addition to the usual step and column increases) + 500k for medical insurance that was never covered in the past.


Posted by scary, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 18, 2013 at 12:32 pm

The Governor and legislator is giving the schools a lot more money according to all their press releases, and we are deficit spending in our district? That will only get us into more trouble should the income in the future not go up as expected.

Hasn't the district learned that deficit spending should not be done? Or is the district now teaching our students in class that deficit spending is the new way of doing things.

I am sure the administration will be getting some raises (like the HUGE raise that Luz received earlier this year) and it is being financed by deficit spending.


Posted by Anonymous, a resident of Harvest Park Middle School
on Jun 18, 2013 at 1:21 pm

We can liken this deficit spending to a small tremor emitting from a deeply submerged volcano at the bottom of the ocean's floor. Increased deficit spending, compounded by increasing salaries/pensions for public workers, will ultimately have a tsunami-like effect upon our community. Just look at Calpers and Calstrs if you don't believe me.


Posted by tim, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jun 18, 2013 at 6:29 pm

99k a year, full benefits and retirement for about 7 months of work a year. unreal?????


Posted by pro teacher parent, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jun 18, 2013 at 7:08 pm

Tim writes: 99k a year, full benefits and retirement for about 7 months of work a year. unreal?????

Tim, do you realize teachers pay for their own benefits, the district does not pay, they also pay for part of their retirement each month. Do you have any idea what teachers do? You have no idea all the work a teacher does, before school even starts, taking classes during the summer (paid by the teacher), working at home on school work during the week and on weekends, attending before and after school meetings, paying out of pocket to make the educational experience better for the students. Have you been in a classroom? The classroom environment is paid for out of pocket by the teacher. I know this is not going to do anything to convince you (or others that will answer) that teaching is a noble profession and should be treated that way.
Because we all went to school, people think "they can teach", it isn't so and if it is go back to school and get a teaching credential, simple as that, if it is such an easy job, you become a teacher!


Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jun 18, 2013 at 7:42 pm

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

Pro teacher parent, It needs to be pointed out that the then teacher leadership (quite a few years ago now) negotiated having benefits rolled into the salary schedule precisely to boost their annual income which is used to calculate their pension payouts when they retire. And because about half (at last report) have benefits through a spouse, the money is actually income. I don't think you can negotiate that change and then complain about it later. Teachers do contribute to their pension fund (CalSTRS), but so does the district.

I would otherwise agree that being a teacher is only getting more difficult. I also think the best of teachers should be paid more than they receive now.


Posted by Rose, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jun 18, 2013 at 10:43 pm

The budget is less than last year. That 's step in the right direction...
I have two kids at Vintage Hills and I will not compromise when it comes to their education. I believe I follow PUSD issues closer than most. I don't have the utmost confidence in district leadership. That said, I'll never forget Back to School Night. I was looking to find fault. Instead, what I found were two teachers who were very qualified in their craft, and two people who cared deeply about children. I left that night thinking that my kids were going to be just fine for at least one more year. That year has just wrapped up, and my kids are better than fine, they are doing great! If there is a better option for elementary school education within 25 miles, I would love to hear about it.
If you want to bash the district, go ahead and bash the district, but leave the teachers out of it. The teachers (and staff) at Vintage Hills are good people doing great work...


Posted by Teachers R Overpaid, a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 19, 2013 at 5:27 pm

The teachers in Pleasnton have it VERY good, too good in fact. EVERY job requires that you put in extra time. The only difference is that in the private sector it is expected for l/t employees and it is uncompensated. At 99k a year, full benefits + unheard of job security in this still lousy for private sector employees economy and a promised bloated pension at retirement for about 7 months of work a year sounds liek a great deal for these priviliedge teachers of PUSD. This is unreal when compared to what private K-12 school teachers get and also for the mediocre performance by and large CA public teachers 'deliver'.

Source: Forbes says CA teachers are on average 3rd highest paid in the nation and deliver 49th worst results. Again, $$ out = 3rd highest, results in, 2nd worst. Id this were a private company, massive amounts of public school teachers annualyl would be pounding pavement looking for a new job instead of complaining about unheard of bennies and $$ they already get.

Nowhere in the private sector would these teachers find this gold mine called their current pay and pension schedules.

And about these pensions, CA cities are going broke already - those Democrat promised 'pensions' will not be there when all these armies of teachers begin retiring at early ages. The ##s don't come close to adding up.


Posted by Joe, a resident of Ruby Hill
on Jun 19, 2013 at 7:05 pm

Teachers R Overpaid. Nice twist in your argument. From PUSD to all CA rankings. PUSD ranks high in CA, nationally our high schools rank in the top 2% which would appear to support the idea that our Elementary and Middle Schools are doing a great job at preparing them. Wonder why housing values are recovering in Pleasanton? Uhhhh, schools might have something to do with it? You pay for what you get- good teachers cost money, and not only do our kids benefit so do unappreciative people like you.


Posted by Joe, a resident of Ruby Hill
on Jun 19, 2013 at 8:08 pm

And Teachers R Overpaid, get your facts straight on compensation. Teachers pay their own benefits (averages about $1500 month.) Thanks to a math teacher you should be able to work out what that costs per year....


Posted by Joe, a resident of Ruby Hill
on Jun 19, 2013 at 8:08 pm

And Teachers R Overpaid, get your facts straight on compensation. Teachers pay their own benefits (averages about $1500 month.) Thanks to a math teacher you should be able to work out what that costs per year....


Posted by Jill, a resident of Birdland
on Jun 19, 2013 at 9:59 pm

But most teachers have a spouse that has insurance already so the teachers voted to have a higher salary instead of the insurance. And like stated above, this adds to their pension benefits. Plus they do have free medical insurance if they retire before age 65 for 5 or 10 years. This is something they pay nothing for; the taxpayers pay 100%. Pretty sweet deal!

If you are paying $1500 per month for medical insurance, you certainly have a cadillac plan. You can get a more cost effective plan on your own (like I do since I have to pay for my own insurance since I am self-employed). But you can wait a bit since Obama says his new plan will bring the cost of medical insurance way down.. Holding my breath now.


Posted by Teachers R Overpaid, a resident of Stoneridge
on Jul 1, 2013 at 10:01 am

Private sector employees pay a portion fo their benefits too. What kind of specious lame argument is that? Like many of other private employees, I pay $500 a month for my private company provided insurance plan for my family, I also pay a $1000 deductible before any insurance kicks in too, I have 10% of my salary taken out to fund MY retirement in the stock market at MY risk. Teachers have none of this. They bear no market risk for their pensions - when CALPERS and CALSTRS has a bad investment year or decade (like the last ten years) they insanely think it's up to the taxpayers to make up the difference (that fight is coming). In many cases, they also contribute less than 10% towards their pension and they expect to retire at age 60 with a pension that is worht $50K - $100K+ depending on time served every year for the rest of their life + free med and dental bennies all for not working any longer. You would ned a 410K worth $3Million to get that kind of ROI but teachers will fight tooth and nail for this lotto prize set up with this corrupt system. If any Californian wonders what is bankrupting the state, there is your answer. Armies iof pensioners are already milking the state now and more armies of teachers are coming into that plan. The #s don't add up for solvency. Fact: $99K for ~8 months of work. Pro-rate that to a full year of work like private sector employees have and you are talking $120K which is really overpaid. Summers off too = sweet deal. I see neither of you argued against my assertion that teachers are overpaid so be inference I'll assume you agree with it.


Posted by Larry, a resident of Bordeaux Estates
on Jul 1, 2013 at 10:23 am

So...why don't you go get a job as a teacher? Sounds like you'd be very happy with the compensation


Posted by dude, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 1, 2013 at 10:56 am

@Teachers R Overpaid

If you had read the article carefully, the 99k salary is only for the longest tenured senior teachers. Most teachers don't make 99k; the median pay for a teacher in Ca is ~47k according to Payscale.com.

Have you seen the API scores for Pleasanton schools? We have friends and coworkers from Fremont and Union City who are looking to move to Pleasanton. Why? The uniform excellence of the schools. Ask any realtor if you don't believe me.
So I'd say the vast majority of teachers here in PUSD are earning their pay, whatever it may be.


Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger, a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 1, 2013 at 11:38 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

dude, PUSD teachers have a starting pay of $60K. 2012-13 salary schedule: Web Link

We also have a very senior staff, with the majority at the top end of the scales. You can read the 2011 discussion board about the scattergram the district had posted at one time. Unfortunately, when they rolled to the new web site, this link was eliminated and I was unable to find a new scattergram.

So while I believe the best teachers should be able to earn more, at least in bonuses, our teachers are nowhere near the median (a good thing). Also, using API scores and looking at those districts with lower scores will always make PUSD look great by comparison. We should be looking at those with better scores to determine what we might be able to do better (acknowledging there are many factors you can't change, like demographics).


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