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Labor Negotiations: 2014 Bargaining Update Archive

Current Information:

Current Contract and Memorandums of Agreement 
Current Salary Tables
Scheduled Bargaining Sessions

 


THE LATEST: October 15, 2014 — School Board Approves Teacher Contract Agreement

New contract is effective through 2016–17 

The Eugene School Board on October 15 approved a 3-year teacher contract agreement that restores school days, increases elementary preparation time, supports special education and provides modest compensation increases. The agreement was reached by the 4J and EEA bargaining teams in late September and ratified by teachers on October 6.

“This is a sensible and fair bargain that sets the stage for long-term success,” said school board chair Jim Torrey, after teachers voted to ratify the agreement. “It restores school days and reinvests needed resources in the classroom, while providing modest salary increases to staff who have had years of stagnant wages. Settling a 3-year contract will allow us to make smart and strategic decisions for the long term, and focus on education rather than on new contract negotiations every year.”

“The school board’s consistent priorities have been to settle a stable 3-year contract that restores school days, maintains or reduces class size, and provides preparation time for our elementary school teachers,” added Mary Walston, bargaining team member and past chair of the school board. “We’ve heard loud and clear from parents and our community that these are the critical places to focus our limited resources after years of budget cuts. Already this year we have hired teachers to shrink some of our schools’ largest classes. This tentative agreement is a strong step toward meeting our other critical goals and improving outcomes for our students. We appreciate the association working cooperatively with us to reach a fair agreement for the good of our students, our staff, and our community.”

The collective bargaining agreement applies to 4J’s teachers and other licensed professionals, such as school nurses and counselors, who are represented by the Eugene Education Association (EEA).

Tentative Agreement Summary 
Contract Draft 

 


October 6, 2014 — Teachers Ratify Tentative Contract Agreement

3-year contract agreement now goes to school board for final approval

Members of 4J’s teachers’ association have voted to ratify a tentative agreement for a new 3-year contract. The agreement must be approved by a vote of the Eugene School Board before it becomes final.

“This is a sensible and fair bargain that sets the stage for long-term success,” said school board chair Jim Torrey. “It restores school days and reinvests needed resources in the classroom, while providing modest salary increases to staff who have had years of stagnant wages. Settling a 3-year contract will allow us to make smart and strategic decisions for the long term, and focus on education rather than on new contract negotiations every year.”

“The school board’s consistent priorities have been to settle a stable 3-year contract that restores school days, maintains or reduces class size, and provides preparation time for our elementary school teachers,” added Mary Walston, bargaining team member and past chair of the school board. “We’ve heard loud and clear from parents and our community that these are the critical places to focus our limited resources after years of budget cuts. Already this year we have hired teachers to shrink some of our schools’ largest classes. This tentative agreement is a strong step toward meeting our other critical goals and improving outcomes for our students. We appreciate the association working cooperatively with us to reach a fair agreement for the good of our students, our staff, and our community.”

Key terms of the tentative agreement include:

  • Stabilizes costs: 3-year contract effective through June 2017
  • Restores school days: 2013–14 was 4J’s shortest school year in memory, with 9 furlough days, 8 of them school days. This tentative agreement restores that instruction time, most of it immediately.
    • Year 1, 2014–15: 2 unpaid furlough days — 1 teacher work day, 1 school day (any weather day will count as furlough)
    • Year 2, 2015–16: 1 unpaid furlough day — hazardous weather day or school day at end of year
    • Year 3, 2016–17: Full school year with no furlough days
  • Increases elementary preparation time: Elementary teachers will have 30 more minutes of prep time each week for half of 2015­–16, and for all of 2016­–17 and beyond. Students will have more specialized instruction such as music, art or PE.
  • Supports special education: Adds case management time for special education teachers, educational assistant transportation support for life skills classrooms, and clerical support to reduce workloads for licensed staff.
  • Provides modest compensation increases:
    • Cost-of-living increases (COLA): 0.5% in the first year, 1.1% in the second year, 1.3% in the third year
    • Salary scale: New top step for experienced teachers, phased in over 3 years
    • Health insurance: District’s monthly contributions increase by 0 in 2014–15, $30 in 2015–16, $25 in 2016–17
  • Shares costs: Nearly $1 million over 3 years will be transferred from licensed insurance reserve to district general fund

Bargaining teams for Eugene School District 4J and the Eugene Education Association reached the tentative agreement on Saturday, September 27. It was ratified by EEA members on October 6. EEA represents 4J’s teachers and other licensed professionals, such as school nurses and counselors. In the final step before the tentative agreement is final, the school board will vote on approval of the contract agreement at their meeting on Wednesday, October 15.


 September 27, 2014 — District and Teachers’ Association Reach Tentative Contract Agreement

Members of the bargaining teams of Eugene School District 4J and the Eugene Education Association reached a tentative agreement on a new contract on Saturday, September 27. The union represents 4J’s teachers and other licensed professionals, such as counselors and librarians.

Bargaining teams met for several formal bargaining sessions in May and June before the current contract expired on June 30. Recently, they have exchanged information and ideas informally, a process that led to the tentative agreement.

“We are pleased to have reached a tentative agreement on a new contract with our teachers and licensed specialists as the school year gets underway,” said Mary Walston, one of the school board members who have been actively involved on the bargaining team. “Since the start of our discussions about a new contract, the school board’s priorities have been to restore school days and instructional time, maintain or reduce class size, and provide preparation time for our elementary school teachers, while maintaining a responsible, sustainable budget for long-term success. Our purpose is to improve outcomes for our students and provide workload relief for our valued teachers. This tentative agreement is a strong step toward meeting these critical goals.”

Before the agreement becomes final it must be ratified by the teachers’ union membership and approved by the Eugene School Board. After a tentative agreement is reached, the next step is for the teachers’ union executive board to vote on whether to approve the terms and recommend that teachers ratify the agreement. If the executive board so recommends, teachers and other represented licensed staff will meet on October 6 to hear the terms of the tentative agreement and vote on ratification. If teachers ratify the agreement, the Eugene School Board will then vote on approval of the agreement at an upcoming board meeting.

The two sides have agreed to keep the terms confidential until after they are presented to teachers and licensed specialists at the ratification meeting. Details of the tentative contract agreement will be made available following the ratification vote.

 


September 17, 2014 — Classified Union Agreement Ratified

New classified contract is effective through 2017–18 

4J–OSEA Agreement 

In June, bargaining teams for Eugene School District 4J and the Oregon School Employees Association, Chapter 1—the union which represents the district’s classified employees—reached a tentative agreement on the next collective bargaining agreement.

The agreement between 4J and OSEA now has been ratified by represented classified employees and approved by the school board. It is in effect through June 30, 2018.

4J–OSEA Agreement 

 


July 18, 2014 — District Delivers New Offer That Would Increase Every Teacher’s Salary Each Year, Reduce Class Sizes, Restore School Days, and More

4J’s July 18 Proposal & Cover Letter 

The bargaining team for Eugene School District 4J delivered a revised contract proposal to the Eugene Education Association on July 18.

The district’s offer includes the following provisions while maintaining long-term budget stability:

  • Provide salary increases for every teacher and licensed specialist in each year of the contract:
    • COLAs each year — across-the-board cost of living adjustments of 0.5% in 2014–15, 0.5% in 2015–16, and 1.0% in 2015–17, on top of
    • Full salary step increases each year for eligible teachers, as well as
    • A new top step that would provide increases in 2015–16 and 2016­–17 for teachers at the top of the salary scale
    • Salary increases over 3 years add up to 13.1% for teachers earning steps for experience and 4.5% for teachers already earning the top step of the salary scale
  • Restore seven school days and instructional time to help improve outcomes for students
  • Reduce class size and provide workload relief by hiring additional teachers
  • Provide prep time for elementary teachers and additional support for special education teachers 

School board chair Mary Walston said, “The board has heard loud and clear from parents, from the broader Eugene community and from the experts that after years of cuts, targeting our limited resources toward reducing class size by adding teachers and restoring lost school days and a full academic year are critical steps to improving outcomes for our students. Since the beginning of contract negotiations, the board has remained committed to those two priorities above all else — hiring teachers to reduce class size and address workload issues, and restoring as many as possible of the nine furlough days that made 2013–14 our shortest school year ever. The offer on the table honors that promise as well as addressing concerns the union has raised.

“It is the school board’s sincere hope that union representatives will choose to return to the bargaining table this summer and come to a contract agreement for the benefit of our students, our teachers and the broader Eugene community.

“We understand and respect that all of our staff have sacrificed time and again to support the children and families we serve. The district is committed to fair compensation and working hard to continue to get teachers the resources they need to be successful in the classroom. The offer delivered to union leadership is balanced and fiscally responsible, and it represents our best effort to build a brighter future for our schools and community together.”

4J’s July 18 Proposal & Cover Letter 

 


June 20, 2014 

Contract Proposals:
EEA’s June 20 Proposal #1

4J’s June 20 Proposal
EEA’s June 20 Proposal #2 

Reducing Class Size: Examples of strategically targeting additional teachers to significantly reduce the largest class sizes
• Example using projected elementary enrollment for 2014–15
• Examples provided previously using current year data:
Elementary & middle & high school examples

The bargaining teams for Eugene School District 4J and the Eugene Education Association met on Friday, June 20. Both teams presented proposals, but were not able to come to an agreement. This was the final negotiation session that had been scheduled before summer. 

The district’s offer would restore school days, reduce class sizes, and preserve elementary teacher preparation time, reflecting the school board’s consistent priorities of improving conditions for students and teachers. The district’s offer also addresses other district and association priorities, including providing salary increases for every teacher and licensed professional.

Under the district’s offer, 4J would:

  • Hire additional teachers to reduce the largest class sizes
  • Restore 7 school days to provide nearly a full school year and restore salary reduced on a temporary basis
  • Provide salary increases for every teacher in each year of the 3-year contract
  • Maintain preparation time for all classroom teachers
  • Support special education teachers by providing daily case management time

The district also presented an example using 2014–15 enrollment projections that further demonstrates that adding even a small number of teachers can make a significant difference for students and teachers, if it is strategically targeted.

The district is disappointed that the two teams were not able to reach a mutually agreeable resolution. School board chair Mary Walston made the following statement to the EEA bargaining team at the close of the final scheduled session:

“We hear and understand your concerns that there is still a lot of ground to cover in our negotiations. We feel that our bargaining teams had made significant movement and progress. The district has worked hard to put together a proposal that addresses both district and association priorities, including providing salary increases for every teacher and licensed professional.

“We are deeply disappointed that we could not come to a settlement within the timeline we had. We believe that it is still possible for us to come to a mutually agreeable settlement, and we hope you’ll consider further discussions over the summer. If we wait to resume negotiations until we return in the fall, it will be with much less flexibility in how to use our limited resources.

“As we now face going into the summer without an agreement, the district will have to make budget decisions next week that will impact the resources that are available for contract enhancements. If we revert to the contract’s status quo, it will further limit the resources we have available. These resources otherwise could be used to address the issues we have identified as being of mutual concern.

“While it is late tonight, we will consider a response to your proposal and get back to you in the near future.

“Thank you all for the time, effort and attention you have brought to this process and for everyone’s commitment to carrying forward with the critically important work we do for our community’s children. Good night.”

 

Contract Proposals:
EEA’s June 20 Proposal #1

4J’s June 20 Proposal
EEA’s June 20 Proposal #2 

Reducing Class Size: Examples of strategically targeting additional teachers to significantly reduce the largest class sizes
• Example using projected elementary enrollment for 2014–15
• Examples provided previously using current year data:
Elementary & middle & high school examples

 


June 19, 2014 

The bargaining teams for Eugene School District 4J and the Eugene Education Association met and exchanged proposals on June 19.

4J’s June 19 Proposal #1 
4J Letter of Intent on Case Management and Caseload Support for Special Education Providers  

EEA’s June 19 Proposal 

4J’s June 19 Proposal #2 

Tentative Agreement on Article 1 

Upcoming Bargaining Session:
Fri., June 20       9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.     4J Auditorium, 200 N. Monroe St.


June 18, 2014 — 4J, Classified Employees’ Union Reach Tentative Agreement

4J–OSEA Tentative Agreement 

Bargaining teams for Eugene School District 4J and the Oregon School Employees Association, Chapter 1 (the district’s classified employees’ union), have reached a tentative agreement on the next District/OSEA collective bargaining agreement. The current contract expires June 30, 2014.

The union’s membership and the Eugene School Board must each ratify and approve the agreement before it is final.

4J–OSEA Tentative Agreement 


June 12, 2014

Register-Guard Guest Viewpoint by School Board Chair Mary Walston 

4J Committed to Reducing Class Size, Restoring School Days

As the Eugene School District and its teachers’ union, the Eugene Education Association, continue to negotiate a contract for the 2014–15 school year, everyone at the bargaining table has a shared interest in resolving matters as quickly as possible to provide the certainty our schools need to plan for next year. By continuing to recognize that this is just the first step in a sustained effort to overcome years of cuts and restore educational excellence, I am confident we can find a resolution quickly.

The opportunity is very real. For the first time in years, we are in a position to reinvest in our classrooms, in our students, in our teachers and in improved outcomes. We do not face the deficits, the cutbacks or the pain of layoffs of years past.

But make no mistake: We still face a constrained budget that requires tough choices. From day one of negotiations, the Eugene School Board has been clear about its priorities for investing limited resources. The district’s financial offer to teachers follows through on our promises. The current proposal would:

  • Restore school days and provide a full academic school year for students for the first time since 2008–09.
  • Reduce class size and provide workload relief by hiring additional teachers.
  • Support teachers by maintaining preparation time and providing salary increases for all teachers.
  • Build a sustainable budget for long-term success.

We can make a real dent in class size with this offer. It adds more than 20 new teaching positions with the opportunity to target our most overcrowded classrooms.

Today we have 45 elementary school classrooms with more than 30 students. If we had been able to add just 12 teachers at the elementary level this year, we could have reduced that number to just 12 classrooms, while also reducing the number of blended-grade classrooms. With these additional teachers, we would have increased the number of classes with 25 students or fewer from one-third to nearly half of the elementary classrooms in the district.

We are at a critical moment. Community members and teachers alike have been vocal about their concerns about increasing class sizes and the ongoing use of furlough days to balance the budget. The school board shares these concerns and will not be moved off its commitment to restoring school days and reducing class size.

Very little financial flexibility remains to meet these goals. If we are to reduce class size and teacher workload, restore a full school year and increase every teacher’s salary as the board has proposed, additional compensation increases and other worthwhile investments will have to wait. We simply cannot do it all, and we must not continue to balance the budget at the expense of our students’ education.

It is time to come together and finalize a contract. We under­stand that staff members have sacrificed time and again to support the children and families we serve, and we respect those sacrifices. The district is committed to fair compensation and working hard to continue to get teachers the resources they need to be successful in the classroom. The proposal on the table aims to do just that. It is balanced and fiscally responsible, and it represents our best effort to build a brighter future for our schools and community together.

This is my favorite week as a school board member. Graduation ceremonies across the Eugene School District are true community celebrations. The individual stories of student success are part of a broader narrative that combines engaged and supportive families, excellent teachers and staff, and a commitment from the broader community to invest in the next generation.

The achievements of the Class of 2014 are the best evidence we have that despite the all-too-familiar stories of budget cuts and the very real strains our system has faced, we, as a community, have refused to give up or give in to cynicism and lower expectations. Even through challenging times, we continue our commitment to educational excellence and innovation.

 


 

June 5, 2014

Opening Statement by School Board Chair Mary Walston 
District’s June 5 Proposal 

EEA’s June 5 Proposal 

Before the district’s new proposal was presented to the Eugene Education Association bargaining team, school board chair Mary Walston opened with a brief statement:

“Thanks for the opportunity to give a brief update before we begin our session this evening.

“Everyone in this room has a shared interest in coming to resolution and finalizing a contract and budget as quickly as possible to provide the certainty our schools need to plan for the next school year. I am confident we can get it done.

“The opportunity is that for the first time in years, we are in a position to be reinvesting in our classrooms, in our students, in our teachers and in improved outcomes. We do not face the deficits, the cutbacks or the pain of layoffs of years past.

“But make no mistake. We still face a constrained budget that requires tough choices. And the school board has been clear from day one about its priorities for investing limited resources. The district’s financial offer follows through on our promises to:

  • Restore a full academic school year for the first time since 2008–09,
  • Reduce class size and provide workload relief, and
  • Support teachers by providing a full salary step increase while building a sustainable budget for long-term success.

“We can make a real dent in class size with our offer. It adds more than 20 new positions with the opportunity to target our most overcrowded classrooms. If we could have added 12 teachers at the elementary level this year it would have reduced the number of classes larger than 30 students to just 12 classes instead of the 45 classes we have now.  We could have dropped the number of blended grade classes from 26 to 17.  And we could have increased the number of elementary classes with 25 students or fewer by 38, to almost half the elementary classrooms in the district.

“We have listened to teacher concerns throughout the collective bargaining process and responded. We revised our financial offer to address compensation and workload issues and significantly scaled back contract language changes.

“Tonight, we will offer additional proposals including a step modification for our most experienced teachers who would not otherwise benefit from our proposed step increase, as well as providing additional support for special education case management and the need to reduce workloads.

“I want to emphasize how little financial flexibility remains. The board will not be moved off its commitment to restoring a full school year, reducing class size, and maintaining elementary prep time. That means other worthwhile investments will have to wait. We simply cannot do it all.

“We understand staff have sacrificed time and again to support the children and families we serve, and the district is committed to working hard to continue to get teachers the resources they need to be successful in the classroom. The proposal before you is a serious, thoughtful effort to build a brighter future for our school and community together.

“I am committed to continuing our strong collaboration and cooperation with the district’s teachers and employees, and again, I look forward to finalizing a contract and budget as quickly as possible.”

Opening Statement by School Board Chair Mary Walston 
District’s June 5 Proposal  

EEA’s June 5 Proposal 

Upcoming Bargaining Sessions:
Thu., June 19      9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.     4J Auditorium, 200 N. Monroe St.
Fri., June 20       9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.     EEA Office, 2815 Coburg Road — changed to 4J Auditorium

 


May 28, 2014

District’s May 28 Proposal 
Related: District’s May 15 Proposal (referenced in May 28 proposal)

EEA’s May 28 Proposal

Targeting Additional Teachers to Reduce Class Sizes:
Elementary Example | Middle & High School Examples 

Image_ClassSizeReduction12Teachers_May2014

The bargaining teams for Eugene School District 4J and the Eugene Education Association met on Wednesday, May 28, at the 4J Education Center. Both teams presented revised proposals.

Upcoming Bargaining Sessions:
Thu., June 5        5:30-8:30 p.m.               EEA Office, 2815 Coburg Road
Thu., June 19      9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.     4J Auditorium, 200 N. Monroe St.
Fri., June 20       9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.     EEA Office, 2815 Coburg Road — changed to 4J Auditorium

 


May 27, 2014 

EEA’s May 27 Proposal 

The bargaining teams for Eugene School District 4J and the Eugene Education Association met on May 27. EEA responded to the district’s May 15 proposal and presented EEA’s revised proposal.

Collective bargaining sessions between representatives of the district and EEA will continue through May and extend to June, if necessary:

Upcoming Bargaining Sessions:
Wed., May 28     4:00–8:00 p.m.             4J Auditorium, 200 N. Monroe St.
Thu., June 5        5:30-8:30 p.m.               EEA Office, 2815 Coburg Road
Thu., June 19      9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.     4J Auditorium, 200 N. Monroe St.
Fri., June 20       9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.     EEA Office, 2815 Coburg Road — changed to 4J Auditorium

 


May 15, 2014 — District Revises Offer, Restores Full School Year and Reduces Class Size

Additional state funding and budget savings eliminate 2014–15 deficit 

Opening Statement by School Board Chair Mary Walston
District’s May 15 Presentation Slides 

District’s May 15 Contract Proposal 
Changes From May 1 Contract Proposal
Cost Analysis of EEA’s May 1 Proposal 

On May 15 the bargaining team for Eugene School District 4J presented a revised contract proposal to its teachers union, restoring a full academic year for students and adding additional teaching positions to provide workload relief and reduce class size. The revised offer would make 2014–15 the first full school year for students since 2008–09 and boost staffing above 2011–12 levels.

The offer presented to the Eugene Education Association (EEA) bargaining team coincided with news that the State of Oregon has provided the district $2 million in additional funding after final budget reconciliation for 2012–13. The additional state funding, combined with a higher than anticipated ending fund balance this year, eliminates a projected budget gap that required 4J to eliminate 26 full-time teaching positions in its preliminary budget. Superintendent Shelley Berman has alerted school principals that the budget-driven staffing reductions will be reversed.

“This is terrific news for the entire Eugene community,” said Eugene School Board Chair Mary Walston. “With this offer, the school board is following through on its commitment to improve outcomes for our students by restoring a full academic year, reducing teacher workload and reducing class size.”

Specific provisions of the district’s revised financial offer include:

  • Adding more than 20 full-time teaching positions to offset the district’s largest class sizes and provide workload relief (this is in addition to the 26 restored positions)
  • Ensuring a full academic year for students by restoring seven of nine unpaid furlough days and proposing the final two furlough days fall on non-school days
  • Providing a full salary step increase for 2014–15
  • Funding elementary music and physical education
  • Maintaining elementary teacher preparation time established this year to be more equitable with middle and high school prep time
  • Proposing a three-year contract that prioritizes additional investments if economic conditions improve and revenues increase

In addition, the district acknowledged EEA’s concern about proposed language changes across a range of contract provisions. The district’s revised offer has removed almost 30 contract language changes and reduced proposed embedded cost provisions.

“We are committed to continuing our strong collaboration and cooperation with the district’s teachers and employees,” said 4J Superintendent Dr. Sheldon Berman. “We look forward to finalizing a contract and budget as quickly as possible, to give our schools, staff and community the certainty they need to plan for the next year.”

Collective bargaining sessions between representatives of the district and EEA will continue through May and extend to June, if necessary:

Upcoming Bargaining Sessions:
Tue., May 27              5:30–8:30 p.m.               4J Auditorium, 200 N. Monroe St.
Wed., May 28           4:00–8:00 p.m.               4J Auditorium, 200 N. Monroe St.

May 15 Bargaining Session Materials: 

Opening Statement by School Board Chair Mary Walston
District’s May 15 Presentation Slides 

District’s May 15 Contract Proposal 
Changes From May 1 Contract Proposal
Cost Analysis of EEA’s May 1 Proposal 

 


 

May 7, 2014

Register-Guard Guest Viewpoint by School Board Chair Mary Walston and Superintendent Shelley Berman

District and Teachers Can Pull Together Again

The Eugene School District and its teachers’ union, the Eugene Education Association, have begun negotiating a new contract.

Oregon schools have had a tough few years, and these continue to be difficult financial times for the Eugene district. By pulling together now, we can deliver on our shared vision for student success and set the stage for reinvestment in our schools in the years to come.

The district has made an initial contract proposal that follows through on a promise to restore school days, avoid layoffs and reduce class sizes. The district’s offer would achieve all those goals and improve conditions for teachers and students alike.

The district’s offer restores 26 teaching positions that otherwise would be cut to help close a $3.6 million budget gap in the preliminary 2014–15 budget. In addition to keeping these teachers in the classroom, the contract proposed by the district would allow us to add teachers to reduce class sizes and teachers’ workload, fund elementary music and physical education, provide preparation time for elementary teachers and increase instructional time by restoring four of the nine unpaid furlough days that have made 2013–14 Eugene’s shortest school year ever.

Those are big wins that would make a difference in every classroom next year.

The trade-off: Funds can be spent only once. A dollar spent to hire more teachers or maintain the current ratio of teachers to students can’t also be spent on increasing salaries and benefits.

To achieve these goals and improve classroom conditions for teachers and students, the district has proposed holding base salaries stable for one year: no cost-of-living increases, and no automatic steps forward on the salary scale.

This year’s raises would not be rolled back. In fact, teachers’ paychecks would increase by 2 percent over this year because restoring school days means more paid workdays for staff.

Still, we acknowledge this offer would provide less than the salary and benefit increases the teachers union has asked for.

We are offering a three-year contract, one that makes stable and sustainable spending a priority through 2017.

Not only does this allow us to make smart and strategic decisions for the long term, it permits us to plan for a full school year and for increased compensation as the economy recovers and revenue improves.

We all know that over the last 20-plus years, repeated reductions in funding have strained Oregon school districts’ capacity to provide the educational experience our students need and deserve. Inadequate school funding has limited our ability to maintain stability, retain valued programs, and make strategic investments. Class sizes have grown and course offerings have decreased.

The contract the district has proposed would allow us to take a step forward rather than backward — we could align our limited resources to keep teachers in the classroom, and we could actually decrease average class size for the first time in years. That’s good for teachers and good for kids.

We are committed to working hard to get our teachers the resources they need to be successful in the classroom. The district’s preliminary budget and this proposal maintain music and physical education and the elementary teacher preparation time we established last year to be more equitable with middle and high school teachers’ prep time. And we are committed to acquiring and using grant funds to expand professional development opportunities so our excellent staff can continue growing, learning and improving their skills.

We’re all in this together. As we continue negotiations with our teachers union in the weeks ahead, our challenge will be to reach an agreement that secures long-term stability and invests in improving conditions for teaching and learning, even in the face of a short-term budget shortfall.

Eugene schools have incredible staff members who are devoted to our students and our community. As we’ve gone through these tough years, every district employee has given up expected compensation to support the children and families we serve. Now it’s time to pull together again.

We are committed to continuing the strong partnership we have created with the district’s teachers, staff and community to secure the resources and provide the education our students deserve. We look forward to finalizing a contract and budget as quickly as possible, and providing the certainty our schools need to plan for the next school year and many years to come.


May 6, 2014

The bargaining teams for Eugene School District 4J and the Eugene Education Association met to discuss the initial proposals exchanged on May 1.

District’s Presentation Slides (May 6, 2014) 

 


May 1, 2014 — District’s Initial Contract Proposal Restores School Days, Eliminates Layoffs and Reduces Class Size

District’s May 1 Contract Proposal 

EEA’s May 1 Contract Proposal
Related: District’s Cost Analysis of EEA’s May 1 Proposal (provided May 15)

Eugene School District 4J on May 1 took the first major step forward in the bargaining process with the release of its initial contract proposal to its teachers union, the Eugene Education Association. The proposed three-year contract follows through on the school board’s goal to restore school days, eliminate layoffs and reduce class size.

“Eugene 4J schools have terrific staff, and we are committed to continuing our strong partnership with the district’s teachers and employees,” said Eugene School Board Chair Mary Walston. “With this initial offer, we avoid teacher layoffs, reduce the number of furlough days from last year and put needed resources back into the classroom.”

The district’s offer restores 26 teaching positions that otherwise would be eliminated to close a $3.6 million budget gap in the preliminary 2014–15 budget. The preliminary budget, released April 24, is required to be based on the terms of current contracts.

Instead of staff reductions, today’s offer proposes a one-year waiver of a salary step increase and allows the district to balance the budget while making the following strategic investments:

  • Restore 26 teaching positions;
  • Add teaching positions to reduce class size;
  • Fund elementary music and physical education;
  • Maintain elementary teacher preparation time established this year to be more equitable with middle and high school prep time;
  • Increase instructional time by restoring four of the nine unpaid furlough days that made 2013–14 Eugene’s shortest school year ever;
  • Update contract language for consistency, clarity and other housekeeping items.

In 2013–14 salaries were reduced by nine unpaid furlough days. The district’s proposal of five furlough days for 2014–15 would restore four paid workdays to teachers’ salaries.

The district’s financial offer for the 2015–16 and 2016–17 school years will be developed in upcoming negotiations based on updated state revenue estimates.

Collective bargaining sessions between representatives of the district and the Eugene Education Association will continue through May and extend to June, if necessary:

Tue., May 6              4:30–8:30 p.m.            4J Auditorium, 200 N. Monroe St.
Thu., May 8              4:30–8:30 p.m.            EEA Office, 2815 Coburg Road   CANCELED
Thu., May 15            4:00–8:00 p.m.            EEA Office, 2815 Coburg Road
Tue., May 27            5:30–8:30 p.m.            4J Auditorium, 200 N. Monroe St.
Wed., May 28          4:00–8:00 p.m.            4J Auditorium, 200 N. Monroe St.

District’s May 1 Contract Proposal 

EEA’s May 1 Contract Proposal 
Related: District’s Cost Analysis of EEA’s May 1 Proposal (provided May 15) 

 


Current Information:
Current Contract and Memorandums of Agreement
 

Current Salary Tables
Scheduled Bargaining Sessions