The Times did a great disservice to all Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) non-administrative employees in the article "Pay Cuts Urged for All School Workers" (Oct. 25). The news item was supposed to be about a fact-finding report addressing the administrators' union, Associated Administrators of Los Angeles (AALA), bargaining with the district. Yet it appeared that the panel recommendations for a pay cut applies to all LAUSD employees. Even if the report said that, this particular fact-finding panel applies to AALA alone and does not speak for any other union negotiations.
In fact, the other LAUSD unions, including United Teachers-Los Angeles (UTLA), are still in their own, separate fact-finding hearings. Just because AALA agreed to a sweetheart deal with the district doesn't mean any other union will. UTLA certainly won't.
The fact-finding report itself is very suspect. Actually, it appears to be the entire district's case presented against UTLA in our own fact-finding hearing. Obviously AALA never presented any counter-arguments. Why should it? The report keeps the massive administrative structure in place and blames teachers' salaries for the budget crisis. The AALA fact-finding report contains too many references to teachers and their supposedly high salaries to be believed as a "neutral report."
Instead it is just another tool created for administrators and the district to use against UTLA and other LAUSD workers. The report should speak only to issues on the AALA bargaining table, not UTLA's.
Just to clarify one of the many inaccuracies in the AALA report, in the past 10 years, teachers' salaries have kept pace with LAUSD's income: In 1982-83 salaries for the UTLA bargaining unit were 46.76% of the general fund budget and in 1991-92 it is 46.13%. Teacher salaries are not the problem in LAUSD, it is the spending priorities and layers of administrative bureaucracy.
United Teachers-Los Angeles