Seriously, if the Yolo County Office of Education had actually offered the Yolo Education Association a 5 percent raise straight across the board, it would have readily been accepted by the teachers. Clearly, there are items that need to be clarified.
First, and foremost, it must be understood that a one-time bonus is not a raise. Nor does a one-time bonus provide a remedy for ongoing historically low salaries paid to YCOE teachers.
Furthermore, to be brutally honest, adding only a meager $480 annually to teacher benefits likely will keep teachers’ families on the county welfare rolls. While Superintendent Jorge Ayala calls this ”entirely reasonable,” I call it shameful.
It is time for YCOE leadership to stop playing semantics and make a straightforward offer to teachers for last year and this year that will give all teachers a 5 percent wage increase. Additionally, YCOE needs to raise annual health benefits to cover the cost of insuring a single person on the least expensive plan it offers.
Ayala has the resources (thanks in part to years of under-paying county office teachers) to make this happen without exposing YCOE to financial risk. The question remains, does he have the will to do the right thing?
Yolo Education Association president, Sacramento