Teachers prepared to strike - Page 2

United Educators of San Francisco authorize preliminary strike vote as concerns about cost of living rise

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Claudia Tirado, a third-grade teacher facing eviction, spoke in front of Cesar Chavez Elementary School Aug. 18.
GUARDIAN PHOTO BY REBECCA BOWE

The next mediation session is scheduled for Sept. 2. "We are currently in mediation with UESF and remain hopeful that we can resolve our differences and reach a fair and equitable compensation agreement," SFUSD Superintendent Richard A. Carranza told the Guardian via email. "We are a public agency and our revenues and expenditures are carefully monitored and audited on a regular basis. Anyone can view our detailed budget and auditors reports online. We are committed to giving our employees much deserved raises but we are also committed to being fiscally responsible which means submitting a balanced three-year budget to the state with a minimum reserve."

The SFUSD statement indicated that the district expects the total cost of salary and benefits for teachers to increase by at least 18.5 percent over the next three years. But Hardy was skeptical of those figures. "That's crazy," he said after reviewing the district statement. "I don't know how they ran those numbers."

Claudia Delarios Moran, a former paraprofessional at SFUSD and Restorative Justice coordinator, started her comments at the Aug. 18 press conference by saying she was excited to be taking her kids to their classrooms for the first day of school. "They're so eager to find out who their teachers are, which of their friends are assigned to their class, and to settle back into the warmth and familiarity of their school site, which is filled with staff who are consistently affectionate toward them and interested in their academic and social development," she said. "These days, that kind of environment for students and families is more crucial than ever, given what they're up against. Many of our students and families are living on the margins, due to their immigration status, their language capability, and their limited income. They're stressed out — due to fear that they'll be displaced from their homes and never find another place in their neighborhoods that they can afford. ... And though the work is hard, educators know that it is a great privilege to serve our children — to help the working families of San Francisco survive here."

 

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