TEACHERS FIGHT CAP OF $15,550 EACH ON HEALTH BENEFITS.Byline: Karen Maeshiro Staff Writer
PALMDALE - About 500 Palmdale School District The Palmdale School District is a school district that serves a major part of the city of Palmdale, California (USA).
The Palmdale School District was first formed in 1888. Approximately 28,000 students are enrolled in the Palmdale School District. teachers packed the school board meeting Tuesday night to protest the possibility they could be forced to pay part of their health-insurance premiums.
Union officials said setting a maximum amount that the district will contribute toward teachers' health insurance would be, in effect, a pay cut for teachers, but district officials said they need to deal with escalating health benefits costs.
``Our teachers are really passionate about not having a cap on the benefits. A cap is a pay cut. We don't deserve a pay cut. We deserve a pay raise,'' said Ken May, president of the Palmdale Elementary Teachers Association.
May said Palmdale teachers have gone without a pay hike for four years. Their pay ranks in the bottom third among 29 school districts in Los Angeles Los Angeles (lôs ăn`jələs, lŏs, ăn`jəlēz'), city (1990 pop. 3,485,398), seat of Los Angeles co., S Calif.; inc. 1850. County that the association surveyed, May said.
But administrators said the Palmdale district is the only one in the Antelope Valley This article is about the Los Angeles County region. For the census-designated place in Wyoming, see Antelope Valley-Crestview, Wyoming.
The Antelope Valley that has not set a limit on the amount paid for teachers' medical coverage.
``The district needs to cap benefits because our budget is out of control without reining Reining is a western riding competition for horses where the riders guide the horses through a precise pattern of circles, spins, and stops. All work is done at the lope (known more commonly worldwide as the canter) and gallop; the fastest of the horse gaits. in skyrocketing costs of medical benefits,'' said Roger Gallizzi, assistant superintendent Assistant Superintendent, or Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP), was a rank used by police forces in the British Empire. It was usually the lowest rank that could be held by a European officer, most of whom joined the police at this rank. for personnel.
The teachers showed up at the board meeting wearing black T-shirts and buttons with a picture of a baseball cap and a ban symbol across it.
They packed the boardroom and spilled out into the hallways, May said. There are about 1,040 teachers in the district.
District officials said they expect to propose the maximum amount the district will contribute for health premiums at $15,550 a year per employee. Nonteaching support workers have rejected that proposal.
If approved, the cap would take effect this school year, but the cost of medical benefits probably would not exceed that cap for a year to 18 months from now, Gallizzi added.
May said such a cap might lead to an exodus of teachers, who have a heavier workload under the federal No Child Left Behind Act The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (Public Law 107-110), commonly known as NCLB (IPA: /ˈnɪkəlbiː/), is a United States federal law that was passed in the House of Representatives on May 23, 2001 and whose classes have increased in size again - up to 35 children per teacher in the primary grades.
``Right now the one edge the district has to hire and keep qualified teachers and qualified support staff are the benefits. That's why people stay here,'' May said. ``To me, it's the priority of where you want to put money in the budget and what you want to spend money on. Their priority is not on teachers. That's how it appears to teachers.''
Nonteaching, or classified, staff at Antelope Valley Union High School District The Antelope Valley Union High School District (A.V.U.H.S.D.) is located in the Antelope Valley area of California, in northern Los Angeles County.
The district includes eight public high schools, one trade school, and two continuation high schools in the cities of Palmdale pay a monthly fee toward their benefits, authors of a Palmdale staff report wrote, and otherwise there is a cap on health benefits in all other Antelope Valley districts. There also is a cap in two districts surveyed outside the valley that are similar in size to the Palmdale district, the report authors wrote.
The average benefits cap for the other Antelope Valley districts is $10,206 per employee, and the average cap for districts similar in size to Palmdale is $6,505 per employee, according to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.
2. In keeping with: according to instructions.
3. the report.
Palmdale trustees in April approved more than $3.7 million in cuts in next year's budget despite pleas from employees not to reduce their work hours or leave jobs vacant.
``If we had a capped benefit plan at the average moving into 2004-05, we would save $4.6 million. This is more than the sum total of the budget cuts that we are making for 2004-05. In other words Adv. 1. in other words - otherwise stated; "in other words, we are broke"
put differently , we are cutting budgets for next year in order to avoid a benefits cap. And we will continue to be in this position annually for some time to come,'' the report authors wrote.
``Until health and welfare benefits are capped, the district will not be able to afford any adjustment to the salary schedule and will continue to be forced to cut programs and positions in the district until there is a massive (cost-of-living adjustment cost-of-living adjustment
n. Abbr. COLA
An adjustment made in wages that corresponds with a change in the cost of living. ) from the state.''
As part of the $3.7 million in cuts, three counseling positions will remain vacant, meaning one counselor will cover more than two dozen schools. The workday is being cut from eight to 6 1/2 hours for about 75 staffers.
Employees whose hours are being cut include librarians This is a list of people who have practised as a librarian and are well-known, either for their contributions to the library profession or primarily in some other field. , technicians and health aides.
The district last year cut $12.5 million from its 2003-04 budget and switched from a multitrack mul·ti·track
1. Having, using, or produced with multiple recording tracks: a multitrack tape recorder.
2. year-round calendar to a traditional schedule to save money.
Karen Maeshiro, (661) 267-5744