San Diego Unified District at Impasse With Teachers Union

After nearly a year of bargaining a new contract, the San Diego Unified School District and San Diego Education Association have declared an impasse.

The two sides simply cannot agree on class sizes and wages and an impasse will allow a mediator to come in and help negotiate.

Superintendent Cindy Marten says “I believe that San Diego Unified has delivered a fair, responsive, respectful and responsible proposal to the table.”

But, outside Perkins Elementary Tuesday morning, teachers, union members, parents and students rallied for what they’re calling the big five:

  • Lowering class size across the board
  • Providing more counselors, nurses and special education support
  • Increasing the amount of enrichment classes for elementary students
  • Protecting educator planning time so they can do their best teaching
  • Improving pay and benefits to attract and keep the best and the brightest educators

These are the things SDEA President Lindsay Burningham says teachers “need to be successful."

Teachers argue they can’t meet the needs of so many students in one classroom.

Both sides have made progress, with tentative agreements on most of the issues.

Still, teachers union representatives say wages are too low and there are too many in the classrooms at all of the schools.

Marten said the district does already have plans to bring class sizes down at some schools next year, but don’t have the funding to do it at all schools.

Regarding higher wages, she said they are confident they will reach an agreement.

It can still be a few months before they assign a third party mediator. In the meantime, the district and teachers union can continue bargaining.

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