A labor dispute in the Whittier City School District was settled this week when teachers and management agreed to a compromise package that includes a 7.3% annual increase in teacher benefits and salary, retroactive to Sept. 1. Binding arbitration was added to the contract, and staggered school schedules were deleted, effective Jan. 27. Kirk Koehler, director of personnel, said the district traded binding arbitration, which teachers supported, for staggered schedules, which the district wanted to do away with.
The lowest-paid teachers now earn $21,152 per year, and the highest paid ones receive $40,189.
The raise could go higher if the district receives $50,000 in Urban Impact Aid, which may or may not be released by the governor by the end of the fiscal year. If it is received, all of the money would go into salary increases, which would be divided among the district's 275 teachers and incorporated into the district salary schedule, Koehler said.
Teachers approved the contract Friday by a vote of 220 to 33. Board members accepted it Monday by a 4-1 vote. The agreement settled reopeners on a three-year contract, which expires July 1.