News

Negotiations still up in the air for Pleasanton Unified and teachers union

District, APT bargaining reps on precipice of 'fact finding' stage in mediation process

Pleasanton Unified School District and the Association of Pleasanton Teachers, which represents certificated staff members, are still in the midst of tense contract negotiations.

Spokesman Patrick Gannon told the Weekly on Wednesday the district has "continues to be committed to work towards a resolution" with the teachers union, which included a meeting between PUSD and APT on Sept. 6, and again on Sept. 14.

According to Gannon, the California Public Employee Relations board mediator also certified PUSD, APT and the California Teachers Association (CTA) to fact finding on Tuesday.

"Either the district or APT/CTA must formally request fact finding, in order to commence that process. As of today, the district has not requested fact finding," Gannon said.

APT said in a statement to the Weekly on Wednesday that the district's proposals for certificated staff "do not center around what is best for our students." Members at the Sept. 1 mediation session were "ready to secure an agreement ... that would give our educators a fair return for the work that they do," but APT contends that PUSD "arrived with excuses."

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"Rather than spending the time in mediation with APT members, management chose to send out misleading information to the community, including students," representatives said, adding the district's public communication "never mentions students and this demonstrates why no agreement has been reached."

APT added they "have been willing to continue negotiations with management to address our guiding principles that ensure that PUSD supports our students by investing in the best resources and supports, class sizes and highly qualified educators."

Last month, the district's negotiating team offered the collective bargaining unit a two-year compensation package from 2020 through 2022 "equivalent to a 5% increase" to the APT, according to Gannon.

The offer includes "both one-time and ongoing salary increases, as well as improved stipends for all special education staff, nurses, psychologists, speech language pathologists, and behaviorists," Gannon said. "Our proposal also includes new stipends for middle school teachers in extracurricular programs, as well as an increase in the professional rate of pay from $32.15 to $46.86."

Up to 15 years of service credit to new hires has also been offered by the district "in order to help recruit experienced teachers."

"This was done prior to the Association of Pleasanton Teachers declaring impasse, and it remains the district's offer at this time," Gannon added. "The district is ready to continue conversations, should APT choose to return to the negotiations table to finalize the collective bargaining agreement."

The California Public Employment Relations Board declared the impasse between PUSD and APT in July. That same month, APT received a 3.5% salary increase via annual step and column adjustments outlined in the existing collective bargaining agreement, but no other pay adjustments have been made.

The district also allocated $1 million towards supporting teacher professional development during the 2021-22 school year.

Around the same time, the Board of Trustees also approved an agreement with the district's classified bargaining unit, the California School Employees Association, which adjusts salary compensation for those union members.

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Negotiations still up in the air for Pleasanton Unified and teachers union

District, APT bargaining reps on precipice of 'fact finding' stage in mediation process

by / Pleasanton Weekly

Uploaded: Wed, Sep 15, 2021, 4:36 pm
Updated: Wed, Sep 15, 2021, 9:26 pm

Pleasanton Unified School District and the Association of Pleasanton Teachers, which represents certificated staff members, are still in the midst of tense contract negotiations.

Spokesman Patrick Gannon told the Weekly on Wednesday the district has "continues to be committed to work towards a resolution" with the teachers union, which included a meeting between PUSD and APT on Sept. 6, and again on Sept. 14.

According to Gannon, the California Public Employee Relations board mediator also certified PUSD, APT and the California Teachers Association (CTA) to fact finding on Tuesday.

"Either the district or APT/CTA must formally request fact finding, in order to commence that process. As of today, the district has not requested fact finding," Gannon said.

APT said in a statement to the Weekly on Wednesday that the district's proposals for certificated staff "do not center around what is best for our students." Members at the Sept. 1 mediation session were "ready to secure an agreement ... that would give our educators a fair return for the work that they do," but APT contends that PUSD "arrived with excuses."

"Rather than spending the time in mediation with APT members, management chose to send out misleading information to the community, including students," representatives said, adding the district's public communication "never mentions students and this demonstrates why no agreement has been reached."

APT added they "have been willing to continue negotiations with management to address our guiding principles that ensure that PUSD supports our students by investing in the best resources and supports, class sizes and highly qualified educators."

Last month, the district's negotiating team offered the collective bargaining unit a two-year compensation package from 2020 through 2022 "equivalent to a 5% increase" to the APT, according to Gannon.

The offer includes "both one-time and ongoing salary increases, as well as improved stipends for all special education staff, nurses, psychologists, speech language pathologists, and behaviorists," Gannon said. "Our proposal also includes new stipends for middle school teachers in extracurricular programs, as well as an increase in the professional rate of pay from $32.15 to $46.86."

Up to 15 years of service credit to new hires has also been offered by the district "in order to help recruit experienced teachers."

"This was done prior to the Association of Pleasanton Teachers declaring impasse, and it remains the district's offer at this time," Gannon added. "The district is ready to continue conversations, should APT choose to return to the negotiations table to finalize the collective bargaining agreement."

The California Public Employment Relations Board declared the impasse between PUSD and APT in July. That same month, APT received a 3.5% salary increase via annual step and column adjustments outlined in the existing collective bargaining agreement, but no other pay adjustments have been made.

The district also allocated $1 million towards supporting teacher professional development during the 2021-22 school year.

Around the same time, the Board of Trustees also approved an agreement with the district's classified bargaining unit, the California School Employees Association, which adjusts salary compensation for those union members.

Comments

Concerned about Schools
Registered user
Walnut Grove Elementary School
on Sep 16, 2021 at 9:31 am
Concerned about Schools, Walnut Grove Elementary School
Registered user
on Sep 16, 2021 at 9:31 am

The behavior of PUSD throughout this process is nothing less than shameful. The "equivalent to 5%" increase included loss of prep time for teachers and more work. In the real world, that's not how raises work. The teachers have been champions the last two years and should be recognized for it, the same way the district administration has rewarded themselves with raises and perks. The Weekly staff and community members should dig into what the district is really offering and what they are doing, which is little for the students and much for themselves. Shame on them.


Pleasanton Parent
Registered user
Pleasanton Meadows
on Sep 16, 2021 at 9:36 am
Pleasanton Parent, Pleasanton Meadows
Registered user
on Sep 16, 2021 at 9:36 am

The fact the district office got raises is embarrassing. They failed last yr and at the start of this yr.

Covid was out of their control, but planning, setting teachers up, filing for the county waiver, grading, and union negotiations were 100% in their control and they failed miserably on them - but all got increases. Totally wrong

100% should have gone to the teachers.


3.5% salary increase?
Registered user
Birdland
on Sep 16, 2021 at 2:38 pm
3.5% salary increase?, Birdland
Registered user
on Sep 16, 2021 at 2:38 pm

I would like to know where the 3.5% number comes from? Is this something that you are regurgitating from PUSD management? Did you calculate the number yourself? The PUSD teachers step and column salaries are on the district website. If you actually calculate the percent increase from step to step there are only a few steps in all 5 of the "Standard" columns that are close to or more than 3.5%. In fact if you average all of the step increases for all columns the average increase is 2.39% (and this is not accounting for all of the teachers in the district that have more than either 6, 11, 12, 12, or 20 years of experience that are getting 0.00% increases in pay each year depending on the column they fall under). So again, I ask, where does the 3.5% come from that you are pointing out in this article. If it is coming from PUSD management, how about they show us the math they used to come up with this number. If it is coming from PUSD management it seems very misleading, what else are they saying that at the worst simply isn't true or at best has been manipulated to their benefit? I am concerned the community is getting a one sided narrative without any actual fact to back up what is being said.


Dumbfounded
Registered user
Birdland
on Sep 16, 2021 at 4:54 pm
Dumbfounded, Birdland
Registered user
on Sep 16, 2021 at 4:54 pm

Mr. Gannon, making your invented claims is shameful. The voters of Pleasanton can see through your invented “facts”. How do you, and those you are protecting, sleep at night?


Smoke and Mirrors
Registered user
Birdland
on Sep 16, 2021 at 5:17 pm
Smoke and Mirrors, Birdland
Registered user
on Sep 16, 2021 at 5:17 pm

Mr. Gannon is just the messenger so don't shoot him. This spin on the truth comes from the Cabinet who are sitting pretty on their recent raises. Our School Board's argument for approving these raises is that they want to retain good people. It's a pity they don't apply the same principles to our amazing teachers who are in the trenches doing the work. There are so many teachers who don't benefit at all from the laundry list of "concessions" the district is offering. It's data manipulation at its finest.


Truth
Registered user
Downtown
on Sep 16, 2021 at 8:07 pm
Truth, Downtown
Registered user
on Sep 16, 2021 at 8:07 pm

If PUSD insists on sharing information publicly, the community should at least have accurate information in that regard.

In their misleading “Negotiation Update”, PUSD management wrote, “On August 17, the District offered a two-year compensation package (2020-2022) equivalent to a 5% increase to the Association of Pleasanton Teachers (APT).”

This statement implies that Pleasanton teachers have been offered a 5% increase in pay. This is an intentional misrepresentation. The current offer by PUSD to APT is a 2% increase to the salary schedule. Keep in mind this is a change over two years since teachers have been working without a contract since 2019, so it’s really an offer of 1% per year. The cost of living adjustment due to inflation (COLA) during that same period was 5%.

The 5% PUSD claims they are offering teachers is their total increase in cost for changes made to the contract. Many of the changes, such as increases to substitute pay and an increase in transferable service credit from 6 years to 15 years for new hires, provide no benefit to current teachers at all. Instead, they address staffing and retention issues PUSD itself created over the last decade by not compensating teachers competitively with surrounding districts. Over the past 20 years, PUSD pay increases trail COLA by over 18%. PUSD would have you believe that money spent fixing their own mistakes is money in teachers’ pockets when this is not true.

More to come...


LanceM
Registered user
Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 16, 2021 at 9:20 pm
LanceM, Another Pleasanton neighborhood
Registered user
on Sep 16, 2021 at 9:20 pm

Absolute joke. PUSD leadership is trying to kill the district. Note that DUSD now has higher pay and teachers are fleeing the district. Ignore any of the money and just ask teachers how their working conditions are today compared to a few years ago. PUSD is now on the list of places NOT to come to. You can see that by the district now offering up to 15 years of service credit which they have NEVER done before. There are teachers in the district that gave up many years of service credit to join PUSD (but the district won't retroactively give them the service credit they give to new hires). Now we have to beg people to come and they still choose elsewhere. Ask the district leadership about it and you will get excuses like "Everyone is experiencing teacher shortages" or "Because of the pandemic...". Then ask them how many more employees are there are the district office than 2 years ago.


Truth
Registered user
Downtown
on Sep 16, 2021 at 9:48 pm
Truth, Downtown
Registered user
on Sep 16, 2021 at 9:48 pm

PUSD continues, “On July 1, 2021, the Association of Pleasanton Teachers, as a unit, received a 3.5% increase in salary via annual step and column adjustments outlined in the existing collective bargaining agreement.”

This statement implies that all Pleasanton teachers just received a 3.5% increase in pay in July. This is also not the case. The PUSD certificated salary schedule is public and can be viewed on the PUSD website. Step and column increases are not negotiated raises. The step and column system is a seniority/retention tool all districts use, and is a part of a teacher’s employment agreement when hired. All teachers do not receive a step and column increase every year, and there are no increases after 20 years of service. The most experienced and senior teachers receive no pay increases unless through negotiated increases to the entire salary schedule, as COLA continually increases every year by, on average, 3%.

The 3.5% management refers to here MAY refer to their total cost due to typical step and column increases over the last two years, but that is unclear and PUSD has not been willing to share how they arrived at this number. This is noteworthy, since this number is what management used to justify their own 3.5% pay increase this summer. Every member of management will receive a 3.5% pay increase EACH YEAR for the next 3-4 years depending on their contract, while many of our teachers, including our most experienced teachers, got 0% for the past two years. They’re now offering teachers 1% each year for those two years - a much smaller increase in actual pay than they gave themselves.

Pleasanton is the ONLY district in the Tri-Valley area that offers NO medical benefits to their teachers. Teachers pay 100% of their healthcare costs. PUSD, meanwhile, has provided for management full medical coverage for their entire families on top of their annual 3.5% increase in pay.

More to come...


dlynn
Registered user
Del Prado
on Sep 17, 2021 at 6:47 am
dlynn, Del Prado
Registered user
on Sep 17, 2021 at 6:47 am

As a parent of two PUSD students, I found it very classless and quite concerning that the Superintendent would encourage/approve the email that went out to all parents and students. It feels very much like the cabinet members are trying to divide the community by pitting parents against teachers. This is terrible leadership and our school district is a sinking ship-with Dr Haglund at the helm. I hope that our school board is paying close attention…


Truth
Registered user
Downtown
on Sep 17, 2021 at 8:13 am
Truth, Downtown
Registered user
on Sep 17, 2021 at 8:13 am

Other things to consider…

This still-being-negotiated contract has already increased the work hours for many teachers beyond what is legally in the current collective bargaining agreement due to new bell schedules ALREADY IN PLACE at school sites that should have, by law, been negotiated with APT BEFORE being implemented. If legal action forces mid-year changes to the schedule that are unpopular, expect a release from PUSD explaining how the unfortunate changes were due to APT negotiations.

District management is taking steps to hide or spend millions of dollars in surplus funding they proudly boasted about at board meetings just months ago to justify their claim they cannot afford these changes.

Many young teachers, upon learning this information, understandably flee for neighboring districts, exacerbating staffing issues. Experienced teachers, on the other hand, would take large salary reductions to leave for other districts because most districts limit the years of service that can be transferred. For example, if a Pleasanton teacher at Step 15 on the pay schedule left for San Ramon Valley, they would move to Step 9 on SRVUSD’s schedule - a $25k pay cut. A Pleasanton teacher at Step 20 would take a $35k pay cut for the same move. These teachers’ only means of a raise is through negotiation. This is the rarely spoken COST of the step and column system. It incentivizes teachers to stay in one district while simultaneously limiting teacher’s ability to seek employment elsewhere if unhappy. Management has none of these limitations - they can move freely for better pay.

Pleasanton teachers, like any professionals, do want reasonable compensation for their work, but are also fighting for meaningful changes that benefit students, such as smaller class sizes and better support programs. What is good for teachers ultimately benefits students, and Pleasanton teachers want what is best for students. Show your support for students by supporting our teachers.


Gina Channell, Publisher
Registered user
Downtown
on Sep 17, 2021 at 2:19 pm
Gina Channell, Publisher, Downtown
Registered user
on Sep 17, 2021 at 2:19 pm

@Dlynn, Are you referring to the email in August? Or a more recent one?


Gina Channell, Publisher
Registered user
Downtown
on Sep 17, 2021 at 3:04 pm
Gina Channell, Publisher, Downtown
Registered user
on Sep 17, 2021 at 3:04 pm

@Truth - Would you please explain "District management is taking steps to hide or spend millions of dollars in surplus funding they proudly boasted about at board meetings just months ago to justify their claim they cannot afford these changes." I understand the "surplus funding," but isn't that earmarked for something and, by law, can't be used on salary increases?


Truth
Registered user
Downtown
on Sep 17, 2021 at 3:43 pm
Truth, Downtown
Registered user
on Sep 17, 2021 at 3:43 pm

Numbers from memory (I'll look for documentation): last year PUSD claimed they had around a $7 million budget surplus. Over the summer they amended this to around a $11 million surplus. Once negotiations reached impasse they claimed they were operating under a deficit. You'd have to ask them where the money went or what it's allocated for.


3.5% salary increase?
Registered user
Birdland
on Sep 17, 2021 at 4:54 pm
3.5% salary increase?, Birdland
Registered user
on Sep 17, 2021 at 4:54 pm

@Gina Channell, Publisher, would you please explain "That same month, APT received a 3.5% salary increase via annual step and column adjustments". Did someone from the Weekly calculate this or was it simply taken from District Management as the truth? If you are trying to do some fact checking here as you are asking other commenters, I ask that you also do fact checking on information in the original article. Additionally, you are also asking @Dlynn about an email in August, are you referencing the PUSD E-Connect email sent from the district on September 2nd?


Gina Channell, Publisher
Registered user
Downtown
on Sep 17, 2021 at 5:04 pm
Gina Channell, Publisher, Downtown
Registered user
on Sep 17, 2021 at 5:04 pm

@3.5%... That is from the district but reporter Julia Baum is asking for the data behind that statement. I also asked her to get some clarification on the issue of benefits. It sounds like it was a pretty good deal when it first started, and remains a pretty good deal for those who have been in the district for a while because their increases are based on the increased salary. But, as @Truth pointed out, new teachers don't have that advantage.

We / Julia are in fact-finding mode.

As for the email, I would like to see the most recent (or any) communication concerning this that was sent from the district. Like I said, fact-finding...

[email protected]




Truth
Registered user
Downtown
on Sep 17, 2021 at 6:55 pm
Truth, Downtown
Registered user
on Sep 17, 2021 at 6:55 pm

Originally PUSD did offer benefits to teachers as part of their compensation package. Sometime in either the 80's or 90's the policy changed so that teachers could "opt out" and the district benefit contribution could be translated into salary. Teachers had to show proof of spouse coverage to "opt-out" of benefits, and those who did not show proof were limited to plans offered by the district (which were not exactly the most affordable options available). The Affordable Care Act changed the proof-of-coverage requirement so that teachers could still opt out of district plans if they wanted to choose their own coverage outside the district's offerings.

This was originally a big win for teachers whose spouses already provided benefits, since they could effectively receive what the district would have paid for benefits in added salary. It effectively gave Pleasanton teachers who could opt out the highest salaries in the area by a considerable margin (close to highest in the nation). However, in the long term it was a win for the district, since it tied the future burden of increasing healthcare costs to the teachers instead of the district. Over the roughly 30 years since this policy change, healthcare costs have FAR outpaced inflation and salary increases, turning the original benefit into a burden.

A comparison of salary schedules between PUSD and SRVUSD suggest that Pleasanton teachers, on average, make about 10k more than San Ramon teachers, but San Ramon teachers receive 100% compensation for traditional Kaiser HMO coverage (or the equivalent compensation toward higher-priced plans) as well as complete vision and dental coverage. For a family plan this is nearly $27k in additional compensation. Twenty years ago, Pleasanton teachers still made enough in salary to outpace their neighbors, but today SRVUSD teachers are receiving, on average, over $15k in total compensation over PUSD teachers per year.

Please, by all means investigate these claims further. PUSD seems to be hiding behind the veil of "technically this is true" however misleading and manipulative their presentation of information may be.


Wow
Registered user
Castlewood
on Sep 18, 2021 at 10:32 am
Wow, Castlewood
Registered user
on Sep 18, 2021 at 10:32 am

When would teachers potentially strike? I believe it would occur after if fact finding is a failure, but I'm not sure. And if teachers strike, what is the district going to do about substitutes? My child has had administration sub in her class because there weren't enough available. And this week, her substitute fell asleep in class. She told me the kids were laughing and couldn't believe what was going on.

Education has already been disrupted in the last two years and now PUSD is not doing their job and it could be interrupted again. Stop lying to parents about teacher raises and stop giving cabinet a nice raise while you are not offering anything to the teachers, who were the only ones I saw engaging with my children during the pandemic. I'm so disgusted that the board and cabinet are willing to put themselves first.


Jeff
Registered user
Birdland
on Sep 19, 2021 at 11:57 am
Jeff, Birdland
Registered user
on Sep 19, 2021 at 11:57 am

The PUSD has been taking advantage of their teachers for years. Pleasanton used to be a destination district for teachers, as teachers were paid well, and the district invested in their professional learning. This is no longer the case. District leadership has given themselves raises before settling with their teacher's union. (BTW - Leaders eat last). District leadership has taken advantage of teachers in part because their union has not been strong and bold, and demanded fairness. Now, as teachers in PUSD finally start to stand up for themselves, the district is fighting dirty. How will teachers and the community respond?


dlynn
Registered user
Del Prado
on Sep 19, 2021 at 1:44 pm
dlynn, Del Prado
Registered user
on Sep 19, 2021 at 1:44 pm

@gina channell

I am referring to the email sent out by the district on 9/2. I found it to be very inappropriate, distasteful and divisive. I am very disappointed that our PUSD students are not a priority for our cabinet members. Happy to forward the email if you haven’t seen it yet.


Jeff
Registered user
Birdland
on Sep 19, 2021 at 4:13 pm
Jeff, Birdland
Registered user
on Sep 19, 2021 at 4:13 pm

Dlynn,
Please send out the email. I'd like to see it. Our community and the teachers union need to rally to support our teachers. Nothing has a greater impact on student learning than effective teachers. The district's role is to recruit, hire, and retain the very best. The district's actions are in conflict with this fact. I still can't get over the fact that senior district leadership gave themselves a raise before settling with their teacher's union. This says everything!!


Gina Channell, Publisher
Registered user
Downtown
on Sep 19, 2021 at 4:33 pm
Gina Channell, Publisher, Downtown
Registered user
on Sep 19, 2021 at 4:33 pm

@Dlynn - I have it now. Thank you.

@Jeff - You can find it here: Web Link


Truth
Registered user
Downtown
on Sep 19, 2021 at 8:16 pm
Truth, Downtown
Registered user
on Sep 19, 2021 at 8:16 pm

@Wow. PUSD has put no priority on acquiring and maintaining an adequate substitute pool for the better part of a decade. They dragged their feet on raising substitute teacher pay to keep up with surrounding districts when full-time teachers were begging them to do it for years. Many full-time teachers have been forced to cancel professional development opportunities, conferences and collaboration opportunities due to lack of subs - often getting called back to their sites the morning of these events while en-route. PUSD relied on the kindness of on-site teachers being willing to sub for their colleagues during their prep periods. After misrepresenting the urgency of the problem to the board last year, they waited until COVID made substitutes even more scarce to raise substitute pay rates and then had to practically DOUBLE sub pay (to $250 per day) to keep up with surrounding districts. This made the hourly rate for substitute teachers higher than the rate certificated teachers are paid for subbing for their colleagues, and they only changed that in an MOU when full-time teachers complained. But that MOU has expired, so until a new contract is finalized, outside substitutes make more per hour than full-time teachers do when subbing. That is an embarrassment.

To answer your specific question, should there be a strike, PUSD will definitely not have enough substitutes to cover all classes. Not even close. On most days they can't cover the typical number of teachers calling in sick (hence having administrators forced to cover classes). One more reason their decision to treat teachers with such disrespect is so ill-advised. If there is a strike, schools will close. Unless PUSD quits the misrepresentation and email games, starts negotiating in good faith, offers Pleasanton teachers compensation comparable to surrounding districts and puts the needs of students first, I would put the odds of a strike before the end of the school year at significantly better than 50%.


Pleasanton Parent
Registered user
Pleasanton Meadows
on Sep 20, 2021 at 9:48 am
Pleasanton Parent, Pleasanton Meadows
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2021 at 9:48 am

If there’s a strike it’s a failure on both sides and throw everyone out.

I have a hard time hearing “put the needs of the children” “followed by chances of strike”

My kids aren’t your pawns.

Grow up, hash it out without disrupting children’s education.

(And I’m not saying teachers are wrong asking for a total comp plan comparable to other neighboring districts)


Todd
Registered user
Livermore
on Sep 20, 2021 at 10:28 am
Todd, Livermore
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2021 at 10:28 am

Why couldn’t this been resolved during the Summer? How long have teachers been without a contract? Unacceptable!! This is just sad. In the end teachers will get some form of a raise and then we’ll start hearing how “some” programs will need to be cut. Next librarians and school technicians will be cut back like they were 5-7 years ago but hey that’s what PTA’s and PPIE is for right? - to make up for lost hours?? - not

Sorry to sound selfish but my family will now only donate to our kids classroom and no longer to the district, no more PTA or PPIE either. The trust has been shattered. The district has proven that it can not effectively manage funds so now this is the result.

This is a time when our children need stability the most and sadly like Pleasanton Parent stated our children are simply pawns in this process.

Oh and by the way Mr Superintendent that idea of changing classes up really went over well last week…. Not! Hope that Humble Pie was good!


dlynn
Registered user
Del Prado
on Sep 20, 2021 at 11:47 am
dlynn, Del Prado
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2021 at 11:47 am

@Pleasanton Parent, maybe you should do a bit more research about what the teachers are actually negotiating before assuming this is about teacher salaries. The statement “work it out” is pretty ignorant. The teacher’s union is actually trying to negotiate to make conditions better for our students but the cabinet members are more interested in getting fat raises and full Medical benefits for themselves and their families Did you know that PUSD has a shortage of school nurses, counselors, school psychologists, social workers AND classroom teachers? This greatly impacts our (YOURS and mine) student’s health, safety and the quality of their education. Do you want the best education for your student? I know I do. If PUSD teachers have to strike, it’s because management is putting their own needs before the needs of OUR students. Personally, I am a parent who is fed up with the selfish behavior of Dr. Haglund and his cabinet members and will support my children’s teachers-especially since they are the ones who tirelessly work with and actually care about your student(s) and mine.


Michael Austin
Registered user
Pleasanton Meadows
on Sep 20, 2021 at 12:09 pm
Michael Austin , Pleasanton Meadows
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2021 at 12:09 pm

I read commentary regarding the excellence of PUSD teachers.

Why are hundreds of PUSD students enrolled in tutoring glasses and or enrolled in professional learning centers?


dlynn
Registered user
Del Prado
on Sep 20, 2021 at 12:52 pm
dlynn, Del Prado
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2021 at 12:52 pm

@Michael Austin

Why don’t you ask Dr Haglund why his school district is under performing…

Excellence in education starts at the top


Pleasanton Parent
Registered user
Oak Hill
on Sep 20, 2021 at 4:38 pm
Pleasanton Parent, Oak Hill
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2021 at 4:38 pm

This is ludicrous!!!! Most teachers can't even afford to live here. If you are not on a spouses healthcare, the cost of healthcare through the district is financially crippling. Meanwhile, the district office is raking in huge paychecks and FREE MEDICAL for themselves, their spouses and all of their dependents. I'm sorry, am I being punked? Does anyone else find this ludicrous? As a parent of 3 PUSD students and a taxpayer, I am truly horrified that this has been allowed to happen.


TheTruth
Registered user
Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 20, 2021 at 7:17 pm
TheTruth, Another Pleasanton neighborhood
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2021 at 7:17 pm

Jeff, you are right on with your posts….except one thing…our teachers and administrators are being threatened by this current district leadership to keep silent, to not share a word about their ‘reassignments” and their departures (removals). I wonder why the community hasn’t questioned the board about the enormous turnover, about the 'messaging' in letters sent to the community…because they are lying to you in what they say, it is a part of their cover up for their failures to “recruit, hire, and retain the very best” and time after time, this community falls for it, believing them over educators who have devoted their entire career to PUSD.

As a long time parent in this community, I don't believe a word they say, watch now as they are doing damage control because they’ve been caught- the parent groups Im a part of are putting it all together, these are our neighbors, our children's teachers. Do they think we wouldn't find out?

Time to ask why this has been allowed. Why are our teachers being silenced with threats if they speak up? Why is this failed district leadership believed over our teachers and administrators? Why are you not asking why they are all leaving?


Gina Channell, Publisher
Registered user
Downtown
on Sep 20, 2021 at 7:50 pm
Gina Channell, Publisher, Downtown
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2021 at 7:50 pm

@TheTruth — please email me at [email protected] I’d like an off-the-record conversation. You can remain anonymous.


Truth
Registered user
Downtown
on Sep 20, 2021 at 8:12 pm
Truth, Downtown
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2021 at 8:12 pm

@ Michael Austin. There are doubtless many reasons parents choose to get tutors for their children, but over-scheduling advanced classes (encouraged by the district against the recommendations of teachers), growing class sizes that give teachers less ability to work with individual students, and more recently the impacts of COVID on students’ mental health and parents’ fears about learning loss (some real, some exaggerated) are all likely factors. These are all things teachers are trying to address in the new contract with increased counseling, support services and smaller class sizes.


Michael Austin
Registered user
Pleasanton Meadows
on Sep 20, 2021 at 8:28 pm
Michael Austin , Pleasanton Meadows
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2021 at 8:28 pm

Many of the tutors are PUSD teachers.
Question I asked years ago.
Why can't the PUSD teachers teach it in the public classroom.


Todd
Registered user
Livermore
on Sep 20, 2021 at 8:45 pm
Todd, Livermore
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2021 at 8:45 pm

um …. Something called class size maybe. How effective is it teaching sometimes over 24 students vs 1 or 2? There have been a few times when teachers have had to take on two classes due to a shortage subs. Again a problem caused by poor district leadership.


Truth
Registered user
Downtown
on Sep 20, 2021 at 9:20 pm
Truth, Downtown
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2021 at 9:20 pm

@Michael Austin. Todd has it right. Especially in impacted AP courses where 36 students are crammed into a classroom. Another thing to consider… if Pleasanton teachers are adequately compensated, why do so many have to tutor in their “free” time?


Michael Austin
Registered user
Pleasanton Meadows
on Sep 20, 2021 at 9:52 pm
Michael Austin , Pleasanton Meadows
Registered user
on Sep 20, 2021 at 9:52 pm

Perhaps a greater emphasis should be on teaching children how to listen, encouraged to read, build vocabulary, how to ask questions to improve understanding in the first years of schooling. If a child knows how to listen, understand, engage, class size should not be an issue.


Todd
Registered user
Livermore
on Sep 21, 2021 at 9:22 am
Todd, Livermore
Registered user
on Sep 21, 2021 at 9:22 am

Class size matters especially if we are putting our children’s needs first. For example some benefits are as follows:

*Students receive more individualized attention and interact more with the teacher.

*Teachers have more flexibility to use different instructional approaches.

*Fewer students are less distracting to each other than a large group of children.

*Teachers have more time to teach because there are fewer discipline problems.

*Students are more likely to participate in class and become more involved.
Teachers have more time to cover additional material and use more supplementary texts and enrichment activities.

Larger class sizes are ok (I guess) if the goal is to simply pass kids through with a basic education however for those that want to excel and set themselves up for college then tutoring is a great supplement to gain an advantage - in addition to the classroom.

It’s not really any different than a high school athlete trying to get better at his / her sport. Is the athlete that simply shows up to the 2 hour team practice going to improve and out perform the one that practices at home and has private lessons? Statistically speaking probably not but there are always exceptions.

Many things in life are predicted on numbers and in the class room it’s a fine line between teaching and babysitting. As our children eventually branch out into the “real world” they’ll understand that they will be held accountable by their results and exceeding basic expectations.

Covid has definitely had an effect on our children - for better or worse - and all this district “possible” strike talk is just another layer of sickening sadness and unnecessary. People’s egos need to put aside, “The Truth” needs to told, and we need to move on.

PUSD and the Teachers Union figure it out….. please.


Frustrated
Registered user
Birdland
on Sep 23, 2021 at 10:27 am
Frustrated, Birdland
Registered user
on Sep 23, 2021 at 10:27 am

Pleasanton, start asking questions and demand clear answers from the top leaders of our own PUSD.
I’ve heard directly from teachers that the concerns being addressed in this thread are true. Teachers and administrators are being threatened by leadership to keep silent. They can’t even give honest answers to reporters without fear of repercussions. This is utterly heartbreaking to me, as a retired teacher of PUSD. When do you think PUSD developed the reputation as a “destination district”? Years ago. And the teaching community has been degraded slowing, quietly over the last several years. Our leader teachers are muzzled, frustrated, and so many are planning to leave. Pleasanton, ask questions! How many staff have left? Why are they leaving? Brilliant teaching is NOT adopting one more “program”. Teaching is a beautiful art, and the tradition of passing that art to the next generation is being lost . Can you imagine what the working conditions must be like for a teacher with love and passion for teaching children to consider leaving? As an earlier poster said, “They are lying to you in what they say, it is a part of their cover up for their failures to “recruit, hire, and retain the very best” and time after time, this community falls for it, believing them over educators who have devoted their entire career to PUSD “. Pleasanton, your teachers love teaching your children. Please support them with encouragement to stay strong while you go to battle for them. Our devoted teachers don’t catch flights home to So. Cal. every weekend. Do you know how many cabinet members can say the same?


eledge
Registered user
Vineyard Hills
on Sep 23, 2021 at 4:00 pm
eledge, Vineyard Hills
Registered user
on Sep 23, 2021 at 4:00 pm

Unfortunately, this is consistent with what we witnessed last year with the school re-openings. There is a lack of strong and decisive leadership at the district level which makes navigating things like a pandemic and contract negotiations very difficult. In addition, our board whose job it is to provide direction to district leadership, does not appear to have the experience or fortitude to make things happen.

We need leaders who lead with confidence and with our children's best interests in mind at all times. The letter sent by the district to families only created more of a divide. Our district is no longer a desired place for educators and after last year a lot of parents (myself included) have also lost confidence. It's time for our board to stand up and demand that the PUSD and APT come to a resolution on this. The absolute last thing our kids or teachers need right now is a strike.


Teachers Spouse
Registered user
Canyon Oaks
on Sep 23, 2021 at 8:07 pm
Teachers Spouse, Canyon Oaks
Registered user
on Sep 23, 2021 at 8:07 pm

Fyi all pusd classified management contracts are public record they can be found on the district website under superintendant management contracts.


Todd
Registered user
Livermore
on Oct 6, 2021 at 7:54 pm
Todd, Livermore
Registered user
on Oct 6, 2021 at 7:54 pm

Thankful for all the teachers that continue to work without a contract. Hopeful that a contract will be agreed on soon. I respectfully have a question regarding teacher training days. Why are teachers out of the classroom for teacher training? Just curious as to why there are staff development days that the children do not show up to school but then subs are used when there is “required” teaching training? Is there an economic aspect that saves the district money? I hear that some from the DO have to sub to cover classes for teacher training now. Seems like a waste of time (sub plans) and labor (unnecessary subs). Simply looking for insight and not a fight.


Michael Austin
Registered user
Pleasanton Meadows
on Oct 6, 2021 at 8:00 pm
Michael Austin , Pleasanton Meadows
Registered user
on Oct 6, 2021 at 8:00 pm

Parents be aware:

The United States Justice Department has refocused the FBI from organized crime to parents at school board meetings.


Todd
Registered user
Livermore
on Oct 7, 2021 at 5:34 pm
Todd, Livermore
Registered user
on Oct 7, 2021 at 5:34 pm

So teachers need to be vaccinated but parents helping in the classrooms don’t? That’s not a double standard now is it?


Jeff
Registered user
Birdland
on Oct 9, 2021 at 9:19 am
Jeff, Birdland
Registered user
on Oct 9, 2021 at 9:19 am

Class sizes can matter significantly. With smaller class sizes teachers are able to use assessment data to target and differentiate instruction. Not all students are going to get it after whole-class instruction. With smaller class sizes teachers can target instruction for the students who didn't get a particular skill or concept. BTW - there is an inverse relationship between the amount of time devoted to whole-class instruction and student learning.


Truth
Registered user
Downtown
on Oct 11, 2021 at 10:00 pm
Truth, Downtown
Registered user
on Oct 11, 2021 at 10:00 pm

@Todd: Contracted professional development days are typically district-wide and involve all teachers. Hence no students on those days. But there are some additional and varied professional development opportunities (some required, some voluntary) that are focused around specific groups of teachers or specific subjects/topics. In concept, this is a good thing, keeping teachers up to date on best practices and methodologies. In those cases, subs are paid for by the district - when they have enough that is - which these days is exceedingly rare. It is not uncommon for teachers to spend the time and effort to make sub plans for these days only to get a call en route to their training location and told to go back to their site due to lack of adequate sub coverage. This has become more and more commonplace over the 5-10 years and is entirely due to current district management refusing to pay subs in Pleasanton competitively with surrounding districts. Now, there is a more widespread shortage (partly due to COVID) and PUSD has put themselves behind. Site admins (principals and vice principals) are the ones have to cover for this incompetence They can do so with campus supervisors, or teachers on their prep period (currently paid less per hour for that coverage than non-credentialed subs due to the contract impasse - hence some reluctance on their part). Occasionally site admins may even have to cover classes themselves. But I am not aware of any case in which district office staff or district cabinet members have ever done so.


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