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Classes Cut While Salaries Increase

Original post made by Ack, Birdland, on Jun 24, 2009

Looks like Pleasanton is not unique, according to this editorial from today's Sacramento Bee:

Web Link

Here's an excerpt:

They could have frozen "step and column" automatic pay increases for years of service and education or looked at $15 co-pays and other modest shared health benefit costs.

Of course, these are negotiable. And as Sacramento City board Chairman Roy Grimes said Monday, the board can't just make them happen: "Negotiable items have been difficult to come by."

So teachers and other staff members would rather see programs cut (and their colleagues lose jobs) than accept some pay concessions in the changed budget environment.

Comments (25)

 +   Like this comment
Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Jun 24, 2009 at 7:39 am

Stacey is a registered user.

"this is a chance for districts to assess which so-called "categorical programs" are working and which are not – and to be creative in shifting money where needs are greatest and resources could be put to the best use. Done wrong, it will reinforce old fears that the money will simply go into salary and benefit increases for staff, with no new educational benefit.

We are beginning to see what local districts are doing with the new flexibility. It doesn't look pretty. "


Actually I slightly disagree with the first premise that this is a chance for districts to assess which programs work. For a real assessment, districts need all categorical funding programs to be given maximum flexibility instead of different programs being put into three different tiers with varying degrees of flexibility. For example, there's no flexibility to shift money from CSR into targeted higher-need intervention programs for at-risk students.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Jun 24, 2009 at 7:41 am

Stacey is a registered user.

"What are parents and community members to do? When you hear about cuts to school programs (and the layoffs that come with them), ask where the savings are going. Are they going to other programs that would better serve students, or are they going only to salary and benefit increases?"

But in Pleasanton if you dare ask such questions you only get called a child abuser!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Scott Walsh
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Jun 24, 2009 at 8:40 am

Stacey, that is a part of that "Community of Character" myth practiced in town.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Diana
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2009 at 9:09 am

Having watched our districts use of money for the last 20 years I have never been in favor of discretionary funding. They will always use it to their best advantage not our children's. If they can benefit our kids in the process that is a bonus but not the 1st priority. The teachers union is far worse, they will sacrifice our kids for their benefit and have done it often.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Mary
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2009 at 10:48 am

"The teachers union is far worse, they will sacrifice our kids for their benefit..."

This is the only problem I see with giving schools more money. It always goes into the pockets of teachers and admin not the students. I wish this problem would go away, but self-interest seems to always be the motivation for doing social good.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2009 at 12:07 pm

According to another post, Web Link (see first comment) , Casey proposed to hire back some administrators with the money they were saving with the 3 furlough days and some car stipend reduction.

It is not a pretty picture. That money should be used to reinstate programs or teachers, or people directly involved with the students.

It looks like districts are just playing games, and Pleasanton is no different. Obviously, if money is cut from administration, is so that the programs can be saved as much as possible. It was not meant to re-hire other administrators.

I feel very silly for having donated money to the current fundraiser, and I hope the board sees how the re--hiring of administrators will hurt not only the fundraising efforts but any hopes of a parcel tax in the future.

This is truly unbelievable.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Feeling betrayed
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2009 at 12:11 pm

Within the last board meeting packet was a listing of personnel cuts and changes.
One of the cuts made earlier this year was the public information officer position. The person who had this job is now getting a 60% time job in data processing. What's interesting is that PUSD is creating a NEW job as a "Management Assistant" which is noted as a 40% job so this person will continue to be employed full time by PUSD.
The community is being asked to donate funds to restore programs that have been reduced or cut due to a reduced budget. But it looks as if our funds will simply free up money so that a favored employee will continue to be provided with full time employment.
Providing the funding to give this staff member full time employment means those funds aren't available for programs, or to restore a reading or technology specialist's job, or even to allow one of the many other PUSD employees who had their jobs cut or their hours substantially reduced an opportunity to continue working.
This kind of favoritism is grossly unfair - to the other PUSD employees, and to the community who is being asked to give to save programs for our kids, when in effect, our donations will simply allow a favored employee to not have to have her hours cut.
Shame on PUSD for even considering doing this!
Also, the personnel listing from the board packet also shows several administrative position which had been cut are back up for negotiation to keep those employees on the payroll until their scheduled retirement in the fall. What is that about? The positions were CUT! These employees can and should take early retirement - something many of us in the private sector have been forced to do.

PUSD can forget about getting a donation from me when they continue to play these games. I will give my donation directly to the my child's school by purchasing needed classroom supplies and library materials.

PUSD needs a change in leadership and the Board of Trustees should have some respect for the taxpayers and not support PUSD's attempts to play favorites - we want our money to go towards saving teaching related positions and programs.

Shame on PUSD.
Board of Trustees - do the job you were elected to do - watch out for the taxpayers' interests! Enforce the administrative cuts, don't allow PUSD to play favorites, and make sure that all those non-essential expenses like unnecessary cell phones, car allowances and management lunches are CUT!

You don't have an easy job, and we appreciate that - but we didn't elect you to rubber stamp PUSD - we elected you to represent the best interests of our children.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Here, here!
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2009 at 2:15 pm

Feeling betrayed -

Excellent Post. Well said. Good job.

Please consider sending this to the Board in a letter.

Pleasanton, until they HEAR us over at the district, none of this matters.

Something is terribly wrong in this town if all of us citizens see what is going on and yet we do nothing about it. I've stopped in to the Board meetings and it is pathetic at the lack of interest. These meetings should be packed. They should know full well what we want - there shouldn't be anything that "they" think - they should be representing our interests. DID YOU HEAR THAT BOARD? Get with the program.

Stop approving everything Dr. Casey asks for. Get down to real business not just your wish list if the world were perfect. It's not, the dream is dying and if you don't get this house in order, there are going to be serious reprecussions.

We want

-Union Concessions of a pay freeze, immediately

-roll back of administrative pay increases from a year ago

-CSR returned to 20:1

-Reading and Music returned

Skip the counselors, that's what parents are for and also college admission offices. Use the JC or peers that know what is needed.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by MARY
a resident of Amador Estates
on Jun 24, 2009 at 2:26 pm

This is the first time I have been excited to hear the citizens of Pleasanton raise a voice to restrict administrative abuse and re-focus the efforts towards the kid's programs and staff that deserve it. Please, let's not let these guys get away with it. They've been duping us for so long that our heart strings have been played out.

Here! here! and feeling betrayed are the true representatives of what we in Pleasanton think about education. Stop those rascals from abusing the system. ENOUGH!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Linda
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2009 at 5:13 pm

I find it appalling that the the district has chosen to ignore the suggestions of the Budget Advisory Committee. I also believe that the management positions they are wanting to bring back were slated to be cut if the parcel tax did not pass, with the understanding that as monies become available programs and positions would be brought back in the order of recommendations that went to the board. It is my understanding that the Public Information Officers position was eliminated, but that person would be able to bump back down to their previous held position in the district. But instead they have created a new management 60/40 position for that person. Same with the Coordinator in Data Processing. So people, you have a Director of Information systems, a coordinator in date processing, and a new 60% Media Technology coordinator/40% management assistant. Also on the board packet are jobs where hours were to be cut, but all of sudden they have been rescinded. What's up with that. Guess money has now fallen out of the sky. Looks to me like the District Office is once again taking care of their own management staff. I think people really need to look at when they are donating their money where it is exactly going.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Wow
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2009 at 6:29 pm

This email just came in to my email from PUSD E-Connection this afternoon...

Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2009 4:53 PM
Subject: From Dr. Casey


Hi, everyone.
Just a reminder that the I Love Pleasanton Schools - Save Our Schools Now kickoff is tomorrow, Thursday, June 25, 6 p.m., on the quad at Amador Valley High School. Please come on by to help "move the thermometer" in support of our students.
John Casey

***************

"Please come on by to help "move the thermometer" in support of our students."

He should have added, "because I am supporting the teachers and the administrators. If you want something for your kids, pay for it yourself."

This guy has got some nerve.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Here, here!
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2009 at 6:32 pm

He should have said what HE was doing to contribute to the bottom line (admin raises rollback, Union concessions, etc) as he encouraged us to do what we can as well.

This is supposed to be a team effort, Dr. Casey. In fact, Sir, what are YOU doing to "move the themometer"?


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Blog Fan
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 24, 2009 at 7:05 pm

I am a pusd classified employee who voted yes on measure G and who is now apalled by the sneaky behavior John & Co are showing the public. Anyone who works for pusd know John and the cabinet take care of their own so creating management positions for previously cut management positions and rescinding layoffs is just another day at pusd. Just ask any classified employee who happens to still have a job. One thing left off the board papers is paid contract employees. Another PUSD secret way of keeping cronies in the $$.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Me Too
a resident of Canyon Creek
on Jun 24, 2009 at 8:12 pm

"It always goes into the pockets of teachers and admin not the students."

Most of the kids already have too much money in their pockets.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Lorianne
a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Jun 24, 2009 at 10:26 pm

Wow. This is appalling. I too was ready to write a check for the "thermometer" and have to say that I will not consider it at this time. Although the money appears to be headed to PPIE or PPEE the fact that Dr. Casey is asking for it directly makes me feel uneasy at best and downright deceived at worst. What kind of leadership is this? Bringing back admin positions when decent teachers have been fired? Does my son's educational experience depend on M.G. working at the district or not? Do I need to donate so someone can work until retirement in a few months? Are they KIDDING? Board trustees, hello, anyone home?

Pity the new set of chumps who are eagerly soliciting donations for this nonsense. Get a clue people.

I would like to see the excellent art teachers brought back. I would be very willing to help fund that. Does anyone know if there is a way to donate directly?


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Caught
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 25, 2009 at 9:00 am

Dr. C and friends just got caught with their pants down. Although I am appalled at their actions, I have just regained trust in the Pleasanton Weekly's blog for providing an avenue to get this type of information out to the public.

BTW, someone should take those guys and give them a good shaking.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Jun 25, 2009 at 2:56 pm

wowie...I thought that you had already left for Tehran and were on the streets raising heck?

But wait, aren't you a FRAIDY CAT FIRST AND NOT A PATRIOT?

Maybe you can donate your airfare to Iran to the PUSD to help out with the school fundraising effort!

Amy will take your money and make sure it gets into the correct account......tee hee hee, tee hee hee...

hup, hup, hup 2 3, hup, hup, hup 2 3...


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Katie
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 25, 2009 at 4:21 pm

As a psychologist in maladaptive behavior (snicker), I can tell you that Cholo is a classic neurotic. He might still live with his mother. He has a bad case of warts on his hands b/c of his antics when he is not on this site. He loves to giggle at his own jokes and makes fun of people he doesn't know. We tolerate people like him because discussions about important issues lead to constructive conclusions. Yes, there are technologies that can get rid of Cholo, but the kindness of Pleasanton Weekly allows the discussion to continue in spite of distractions that come from the web. I applaud Pleasanton Weekly and please ignore this guy. Now back to the discussion.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Katie
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 25, 2009 at 4:33 pm

How can the administrators be allowed to do this? It seems unfair.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Jun 25, 2009 at 5:22 pm

Thank you for sharing. Now, where did you earn your credentials? Do have a Ph.D. in psychology? Is the institution where you completed your studies...like legit? Are you licensed in the State of CA? What department? Were you ever enrolled in a Beginning Psychology class at Diablo Valley College? Hmmmmmmmmm...?

I've never heard of an individual being "a psychologist in maladaptive behavior"? That's almost too silly for words! Would you please essssssplain what "a psychologist in maladaptive behavior" does? Gimme a clue...tee hee hee, tee hee hee...

You know what Katie...I think that you just got a bit carried away, maybe have a dream of being a professional but it didn't work out for you! You coo coo bird...hahahahahahahahaha...


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Jun 25, 2009 at 5:25 pm

Wow...I thought you were marching off toe WAR! hahahahahahahahahahahahaha...

Admit it....are you married to Katie? hahahahahahahahahahhaha...it doesn't mean you're a bad person...tee hee hee, tee hee hee...


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Jun 25, 2009 at 10:17 pm

katie...you're not a bad person for having a pretend "psychologist" dream! You're just stupid and couldn't get into a professional graduate school (snicker)!

you have a wrilly cool fantasy/pretend life...go girl!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by WoW
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 25, 2009 at 11:34 pm

Cholo,

Did Pleasanton Weekly actually REMOVE that whole thread about you being arrested?

You know, the sheep ordeal...


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Jun 26, 2009 at 9:31 am

YUP! hahahahahahahaha....now, off to war!!! wowie...is it wrilly "Mission Accomplished"?

kayte = BUSTED!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by parent
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 26, 2009 at 3:30 pm

I posted this on another thread but will repost here. The administrators are the only group to have given money back to the district, last year and this. The teachers union needs to step up and give something if they wish to save their jobs- as do teh classified.If I was a teacher who had lost my job, I would be asking my union to represent me- not expect administrators to bail me out. As I understand it, the teachers union has refused to give up the 2 teachers work days that they had initially said they would if the parcel tax passed. Shame on them!


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