The Pleasanton Unified School District announced a tentative agreement with the classified employee union on a contract settlement including a 5.65% salary increase and improved health benefits, district staff said last week.
Patrick Gannon, PUSD director of communications, stated in a press release that the Classified School Employee Association (CSEA) union members will still have to vote on the agreement before it goes to the school board for approval. According to Gannon, both parties' bargaining teams went through five hybrid interest-based bargaining (IBB) model negotiations sessions before settling on the agreement on April 28.
"Our CSEA negotiations team felt the hybrid interest based bargaining process was productive and collaborative. The CSEA team felt free to offer their insights and ideas as we worked together through many negotiation topics and language," CSEA President Laura Martinez stated in the district press release.
Interest-based bargaining is a bargaining process that focuses on creating mutually-beneficial settlements for both parties. The CSEA, along with various district leaders and bargaining teams, underwent a training at the beginning of the year focused on this new process.
The training also took place a month after PUSD and the Association of Pleasanton Teachers union signed a memorandum of understanding that both sides said signified a successful start to the year's labor negotiations.
Apart from the 5.65% salary increase, the settlement also includes a "total 6.67% compensation package including improved health benefits," according to the district.
Gannon said that the increase was based on a "fair share formula," which was established through the new interest-based negotiations process, that prioritizes the sharing of new anticipated revenue on an equitable basis.
"As a whole team we are invested in the process and committed to continuing to solidify our bargaining relationship, built on trust and mutual respect," Martinez said. "The fair share model is not new to some districts but is to PUSD. Our team has agreed to a pilot year using this compensation model. We hope it will benefit our classified employees and keep us competitive so we can continue to offer the best for students, staff and the community."
If approved, classified employees would also get three professional development days out of the contract settlement; an update to the "Classified Professional Handbook" in order to create a career pathway; and stipends for associates, bachelors, masters and doctorate degrees.
"We’re pleased to have engaged in the IBB process with our classified unit members. This collaborative approach was well received and led us to a productive outcome in a timely manner," PUSD Superintendent David Haglund said in the press release. "I look forward to seeing this practice expanded where it can be helpful and lead to outcomes that benefit our students and staff."
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