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MDUSD teachers’ union president and superintendent issue joint statement in support of Prop. 30

By Theresa Harrington
Friday, October 26th, 2012 at 5:40 pm in Education, Mt. Diablo school district.

I received the following joint statement in support of Prop. 30 from Guy Moore, president of the Mt. Diablo teachers’ union. I am posting it below, with his permission. It was drafted and signed by both Moore and Mt. Diablo district Superintendent Steven Lawrence.

“Teachers and Administrators say vote YES on Proposition 30

Over the past four years, K-12 education, community colleges, California State University, and University of California systems have suffered the effects of over $20 billion in cuts. During this same period of time, over thirty thousand teachers have been laid off, class sizes have increased and essential programs and services have been eliminated.

In the Mt. Diablo Unified School District (MDUSD) we have: significantly increased the number of students in each class; reduced the number of administrators, counselors, librarians, custodians, maintenance, and other support providers; reduced our elementary music and art programs; and relied on voluntary contributions and fundraising to keep our high school athletic programs going.

This November, voters have an opportunity to stop the reductions in education funding by passing Proposition 30. Prop 30 temporarily raises the income tax rate on the top 2 percent of wage earners in the state. Individuals who earn more than $250,000 per year, and couples who earn in excess of $500,000, would see their taxes increase by 1 percent over a seven year period. The state sales tax would also increase by ¼ of 1 percent for four years. This amounts to a twenty-five cent increase in sales tax per hundred dollars spent.

If Prop 30 fails, it will result in an estimated $440 per-student loss to the current year MDUSD budget, or the equivalent of $13.5 million in lost revenue between January and June of 2013. In order to address this possible financial catastrophe, district employees have agreed to shorten their respective work years by an amount equivalent to a 6 percent pay cut, which would mean upto eleven less instructional days for students if Prop 30 fails. As a result, the 2012-13 school year could end by May 30, 2013.

The choice for education is clear. Voting Yes on Prop 30 will stabilize education funding in the short term ensuring that our students will receive a full 180 days of instruction this school year. The MDUSD School Board passed, along with Acalanes, Antioch, Lafayette, Martinez, Orinda, Pittsburg, Pleasanton,and Walnut Creek school districts, resolutions supporting Proposition 30.

In order to be ready for college and have the skills necessary to compete in a global economy, our children simply cannot afford to take any further reductions in programs or services. Doing so will not only limit our children’s future opportunities, it will continue to erode the business and economic development in California.

Please join teachers, education support personnel, and administrators across California and vote YES on Proposition 30 on November 6th. California’s students and economic future need a strong pre-school through university educational system.

Guy Moore                                                 Steven Lawrence, Ph.D.
President                                                   Superintendent
Mt. Diablo Education Association                  Mt. Diablo Unified School District”

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  • http://www.k12reboot.com Jim

    It appears that all of the districts in S. CA either could not get their teachers to agree to the terms of the RTTT competition, or felt the application was “too arduous to complete”. But one system, the Green Dot charter schools, felt differently.

    From today’s HuffPo:

    It does appear that Southern California will have one applicant in the running.

    Green Dot, a 12-year-old charter schools organization, filed its application for a $30 million grant that it wants to use to boost its science and social studies courses, expand its use of technology and strengthen its support of college-bound students.

    CEO Marco Petruzi said the 530 members of Green Dot’s teachers union not only endorsed the application but were part of its development.

    “They view themselves as partners in our mission,” he said. “They share the responsibility for getting our students college, leadership and life-skills ready.

    “They want to win the money as much as we do.

    Imagine that! Administrators and union members working collaboratively for the benefit of the kids!
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/31/california-race-to-the-top_n_2045479.html

  • Doctor J

    @Jim#51 — One of the many reasons that Steven Lawrence didn’t get the Sacramento gig earlier in the year — the unions and district in San Juan work collaboratively — MDEA did not report that kind of collaboration when asked by its San Juan counterparts.

  • Wait a Minute

    IMO Stevie Lawrence has NEVER been a collaborative leader in his entire management career. He has ALWAYS had a top-down do-as-I-say mandate style. As a result, Stevie has always been a failure as a leader wherever he has been.

    Furthermore, all his favorite administrators like Sue Brothers, Kate McClatchy, Bill Morons, Gretchen Jacobs also have the same management style and all have been total failures as leaders too.

    Incidently, their favorite tactic has always been to assemble a thin veneer of supporters by collecting up the brown-nosers and bullying the weak into supporting their asinine polcies that have not only been unsuccessful, but have also done egregious long-term damage to the institutions which have had to suffer their incompetent leadership.

    Please tell all your familily, friends, co-workers and neighbors to please VOTE NO ON WHITMARSH!

  • anon

    @wait a minute #53: couldn’t agree more. steven lawrence needs to go. he claims to promote “collaboration” but his actions are clearly a top-down style. just check out the number of competent principals of 800+ API Schools who have left in the past 3 years-very telling. VOTE NO ON WHITMARSH, AND LAWRENCE WILL BE FORCED TO PACK HIS BAGS.

  • MDUSD Board Watcher

    VOTE NO ON WHITMARSH! Put an end to her reign of terror.

  • Doctor J

    Steven Lawrence and Guy Moore promised us that if Prop 30 passed, there would be no furlough days — or did they ? “Voting Yes on Prop 30 will stabilize education funding in the short term ensuring that our students will receive a full 180 days of instruction this school year.”

    I think Steven Lawrence is going to imposed furlough days anyways.

  • Doctor J

    Where does Steven Lawrence get his talking points ? Read this. Despite Prop 30, Lawrence will be cutting. http://wwwstatic.kern.org/gems/fcmat/CACitySchoolsSupsConfpresSep.ppt

  • Theresa Harrington

    I believe the union only agreed to furlough days if state funding is reduced. So, if Lawrence wants to “impose” furlough days, those would need to be negotiated.
    Guy Moore told me that he hoped the superintendent’s willingness to work on the joint Prop. 30 statement would usher in a new era of collaboration between the district and the union. He also said no district resources were used to create the joint statement.

  • Doctor J

    No district resources ? Guy Moore isn’t telling the truth. No phone at MDUSD ? No MDUSD email ? No meeting at Dent ? Are you kidding me ? Guy, are you so naive to believe you can ignore the truth ? Tell us directly: you met only at his home, talked to him only on his home phone and did not exchange emails about this ? Where is your credibility ?

  • Theresa Harrington

    Dr. J: I just spoke with Annie Nolen, CSEA rep, and she said the union met with the superintendent yesterday and was told there would be no furlough days. CSEA members had been having money deducted from their paychecks to soften the blow if furlough days were taken. But now, they will be repaid what was deducted and will have no more deductions, Nolen said. So, she does not see any reason for continued speculation that furlough days will still be taken. In fact, she said she sent an email to her members informing them there will be no furlough days.

  • Doctor J

    @TH#60 That’s good news for students, teachers and staff. I guess they will get a Christmas bonus.

  • Flippin’ Tired

    EVERYONE had furlough days taken out of their paychecks, Theresa. Not just CSEA members. Custodians, clerks, teachers and principals too.

  • Doctor J

    Steven Lawrence missed another boat: most bonds and parecel taxes passed. http://www.edsource.org/today/2012/local-votes-of-confidence-most-bonds-parcel-taxes-pass/22767#.UJzHZId9KOw

  • Doctor J

    EdSource is reporting that even with Prop 30, cuts are needed at District levels: “Ron Bennett, the president and CEO of School Services, who moderated the event, underscored that point, telling about a meeting he had in a large school district a few days ago. District officials told him that if Prop. 30 had failed, they would have had to cut $60 million this year. “Now they only have to cut $19 million,” said Bennett, noting, with some irony, that they’re very relieved about that.” http://www.edsource.org/today/2012/big-win-for-schools-as-prop-30-defies-polls/22676#.UJzPHhySVdV
    Further cuts at MDUSD ?

  • g

    Did no one believe that “forgiving” the $2.5 billion debt the state already owed the districts from taxes we already paid would result in cuts?

    Districts have carried (relied on) that debt on the books as ‘future income’ for years. Now they have to just wipe it out and call it a loss.

  • Theresa Harrington

    FT, Nolen said she didn’t know if everyone (in other unions) had money for furlough days taken out of their paychecks since the beginning of the year. But, it has always been clear that everyone was supposed to take furlough days if Prop. 30 failed.

    Dr. J: When I interviewed the candidates about going out for a possible parcel tax, the challengers all said they didn’t think voters would pass one until the district rebuilds trust in the community. Despite worse test scores overall than MDUSD, WCCUSD has more public trust.