SDEA members casting ballots for a historic new contract
Teachers and other certificated employees like counselors, librarians, and therapists of the San Diego Unified School District could be just days away from a new contract.
Thomas Courtney has been teaching at Chollas Meade Elementary School for the past 24 years. He cast his paper ballot Tuesday, in favor of the deal.
“My elation really comes from the fact that it’s a union and a district negotiation that ended in a good, positive way, and I think it’s good for everybody, really," Courtney said.
More than 6,000 certificated employees are voting by paper ballots which are being collected on campuses and at headquarters for the San Diego Education Association in Mission Valley.
According to SDEA President Kyle Weinberg, members built a coalition with sibling unions and others to win big in the negotiations.
“That was the difference maker in sending a clear message to the district that educators, parents, and community organizations were united to win these improvements for our school communities," Weinberg said.
A lunchtime union meeting at Millennial Tech Middle School Tuesday offered teachers more details on the contract offer and the opportunity to vote.
That happened on campuses across the district this week, as union leaders continued to encourage ratification of the contract.
Kirsten Kester is a school audiologist who cast her ballot in favor. She said, "It's exciting to finally be maybe moving up toward where we should be in the district and be more competitive with our salaries so we can get new people in.”
Ballots will be collected through Thursday, with results expected by the end of this weekend.