Since July 1, 2018, KPBSD educators have been working without a contract. Despite our efforts to bargain in good faith with the district, they have been unwilling to provide us with an offer that would address some of the most pressing issues we face; salary, health insurance, and contract duration. The district has received over $2 million in additional funds from the State of Alaska for next fiscal year, and stands to receive even more the following year. Even with this additional money, the district has yet to provide any initial financial offers to our bargaining teams.
We have also asked the district for data and information about the health insurance program that would allow us to implement additional cost saving changes. The district agreed to provide that information on August 20th. They have provided no data.
Recently, the district made a disturbing decision that could endanger the fiscal sustainability of our health insurance plan by offering an emergency open enrollment period with only one option: to switch from the traditional to high deductible. They made this plan and announced it to the healthcare committee before we set the rate! Essentially, the district is attempting to get our members to opt into plans without reliable information about the cost. We will not know what the rates are until we get the data we requested from the insurance broker. More troubling still is the fact that the district has not even made a request to the broker to provide the information the bargaining team has requested.
KPEA and KPESA are attempting to bargain in good faith with the district and secure a contract that protects our rights as educators, compensates us fairly for the jobs we do, and provides affordable and reliable health insurance benefits to our families. At this time, the district does not seem willing to honor our modest requests for information that will allow us to continue our negotiations.
It is vital that we contact our principals and school board members and urge them to direct the district to come to the bargaining table in good faith, with the information we’ve requested. KPBSD educators deserve to be treated with the same respect and dignity that we should our students every day. Please take the time to email (via Outlook) or call your school board member today.
List School Board Contact Information Here:
Soldotna - Penny Vadla - 262-7249
Homer – Zen Kelly – 235-9700
K Beach – Dan Castimore – 398-3609
Homer - Mike Illg – 299-6425
Sterling – Marty Anderson – 252-7800
Ninilchick – Debbie Cary – 398-8308
Seward – Lynn Holh – 224-2300
Kenai - Tim Navarre – 394-2303
Nikiski – Jason Tauriainen – 398-1024
KPEA Initial proposal to the District
Out of 77 sections of the contract, KPEA Opened 13 sections and has already reached agreement with the District on 3 of those 13 sections involving instructional leaves and use of sick leave for bereavement.
We are proposing a 3 year contract.
Our offer proposes increases to the salary schedule that offer financial surety to the District below inflation at 0.5% for the first year, 1% for the second, 2% in the third year which matches average inflation.
The District offers steps and lanes, but no increase to the salary schedule.
110 Salary Conditions:
KPEA proposes that teachers and Type C certificates can pursue their National Board Certifications and upon achieving their certification, they will be eligible to receive $5000/year instead of $2000. Renewal requirements have increased from every 10 years to 5 years and these programs are extremely valuable at improving student success.
210 Health Insurance:
The KPEA proposal returns to an 85/15 (Traditional) and 90/10 (HDHP) split of healthcare premium costs without a cap.
The District proposal maintains the current rate and cap and potentially ties the hands of the employee’s health insurance subcommittee in limiting risk of overages at the end of the plan year.
320 Personal Leave:
We are proposing an increase of one personal day to a total of 5. Teachers need time to engage in subsistence activities, attend the out of town sporting events of their children and students, as well as chaperone class field trips. These activities are not available during built-in breaks of the regular school schedule.
340 Sick Leave:
Teachers across the district have requested an incentive for the conservation of sick leave. We propose that upon retirement or resignation after 10 years of service in the District, employees have the option of cashing out sick leave at 80% of the certified sub rate of pay or apply sick leave to TRS if allowed by statute.
Teachers have expressed the desire for flexible scheduling if they have an assignment in a non-traditional teaching venue. Both KPEA and the District agree and have proposed similar language to meet this need.
Teachers also have expressed concern with the District potentially not providing adequate time and facilities for breastfeeding moms. We propose that the District ensures the application of the FLSA principles about breastfeeding to teachers.
The District is proposing that “In no event shall a teacher’s work day be less than seven hours, excluding a duty free lunch.” KPEA has several concerns with this broad language. This could be a sign of things to come and this proposed requirement may subject the District to litigation.
475 Teacher Prep:
Elementary teachers have voiced extreme need for increased uninterrupted prep time. We propose an increase in elementary teacher prep periods from 30 to 45 minutes.
The light is returning! It won’t be long now until we won’t be driving to work in the dark. I hope this letter finds you well. I have been to most schools this year and enjoy visiting with you. If you haven’t seen me yet, I am coming to your school soon. Here are a few reminders:
Go to: https://www.eballot4.votenet.com/neaalaska/login.cfm to vote for state-wide positions. Your username is your last name in all caps. Your password is your membership # which is on your card or the state can get it to you quickly if you call 1-800-996-3225. Please take a minute and make your voice heard. You have until Thursday 2/1 @ 11:59.
We are going back to the table next month. Please keep an eye out for my email updates. If you haven’t seen anything from me please send me a good address. Also, keep in mind that my emails often get filtered into a spam folder because of how many recipients I email, so check there as well.
Transfer Deadline -- Feb. 1
If you’re tenured and would like to transfer sites please be sure to fill out the request form by February 1. Also keep in mind that you must check all sites you are interested in. And district-wide doesn’t mean you willing to go anywhere, it means that you want to be itinerant.
Contracts will be coming out next month for all tenured and hard to fill (special ed. and across the water schools) positions. Send your signed contract to Kelsey Ciufo within 30 days of receiving your contract. She doesn’t need your original but it’s a good idea to “bizhub” it to yourself and then to her so that she sees who it’s from AND you have proof that you sent it, just in case.
Discretionary Funds Deadline – May 1
Remember the deadline for submitting your discretionary funds is May 1st. We know you spent more but you can get $225 back.
The election for NEA-Alaska officers, Board of Directors, and state sponsored delegates to Representative Assembly begins
Tuesday 1/23 at 12:00 am and closes Thursday 2/1 at 11:59 pm.
You will receive an email with your login information and a link to the electronic ballot. If you don't you can call 1-800-996-3225 and they can help you log in, they are quick and happy to help.
Here is the link for the ballot: https://eballot4.votenet.com/neaalaska/login.cfm?j=5178476&sfmc_sub=309278230&l=96_HTML&u=128504467&mid=1390168&jb=1