Nancy Oudegeest: Teacher morale in Ceres nosedives

April 16, 2014 

Ceres Unified teachers are concerned with the negotiation strategies used by the district. What the teachers have found is a district unwilling to negotiate in “good faith” – willing only to dictate the terms of the new contract, and summarily rejecting any proposals or modifications offered by teachers.

In 2009, teachers were forced to take an 8.5 percent pay cut. This was restored in 2013. This brings teachers back to the salary schedule of 2008. Having not had a raise since 2008, teachers are asking for 4.5 percent (COLA plus 1 percent for each year of the cut). The district instead proposed a 1.5 percent raise and stated they have no further interest in discussing salary. Many of the same people who are refusing to discuss salary have received raises every year since 2010.

Morale has plummeted and many are left wondering why a district that they give so much to is not willing to fairly compensate them for their work.

NANCY OUDEGEEST

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