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Chula Vista Elementary Teachers Get Pay Bump Without Class-Size Increase

Teachers and parents demonstrate outside Clear View Elementary, protesting a ...

Photo by Joe Hong

Above: Teachers and parents demonstrate outside Clear View Elementary, protesting a proposal that could increase class sizes across Chula Vista Elementary School District. Jan. 29, 2020

The Chula Vista Elementary School District has agreed to a tentative contract with its teachers' union that does not include class-size increases.

Negotiators for the union and district reached a tentative agreement last Thursday to raise teacher salaries by 1.5% and give them a one-time 2% bonus. The district will also increase its contribution to teacher health benefits by $1,000 per teacher between now and January 2021.

The teachers union will vote to ratify the agreement by March 20.

The negotiations sparked protests in January when the district proposed replacing the 31-student limit on class sizes in grades 4-6 with a cap on average class sizes at each school. This means that some classes could have had more than 31 students as long as the average class size for the upper grades at a particular school stayed at or below that number.

The district said the class-size increases were needed to offset the costs of the bump in pay and benefits. Union members, however, denounced the proposal, saying it could lead to class sizes as high as 35 students, and staged a district-wide after-school walkout late last month.

Susan Skala, president of Chula Vista Educators, said she expects the tentative agreement will be ratified by the union.

District officials echoed the positive sentiments. Spokesman Anthony Millican said the administration is hopeful the governor’s revised budget will help address the high cost of teacher pensions and special education at local districts, fiscal concerns that were raised previously by the district.

“We are grateful and appreciative of the amazing work of our teachers,” Millican said. “We look forward to the ratification of this contract by Chula Vista Educators.”

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Photo of Joe Hong

Joe Hong
Education Reporter

opening quote marksclosing quote marksAs an education reporter, I'm always looking for stories about learning. My favorite education stories put a student's face on bigger policy issues. I regularly sift through enrollment data, test scores and school budgets, but telling student-centered stories is my top priority.

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