March 18, 2022

Today, after yesterday's Rally, the district issued a press release with the title, District Continues to Seek Fair Contract for Paraprofessionals, Calls on SFP to Stop Spreading Lies

To begin, every proposal that the District and the Federation have made during negotiations is on our website.

 

During our last negotiation session on February 3, 2022 we requested that the district negotiation team go back to the School Committee and request more money. They refused to schedule an additional date for negotiations at that time and said they would get back to us. On February 4, 2022 I sent an email to the district negotiation team with data relating to participation rates in our 30 Hour Professional Development program. I sent another email to the district negotiation team on February 14, 2022 requesting we resume our succession bargaining and proposed 4 dates. On the afternoon of February 14, 2022 the district issued their first press release in relation to our current negotiations and emailed the Federation a Petition for Mediation and Fact Finding.  To say we were surprised would be an understatement.  We held our first mediation session on March 14, 2022 and did indicate that we would prefer to be in direct negotiations but otherwise stated our concerns with the district current proposals with the mediator.

The wage proposals below reflect the district's wage proposals for the current school year, 2021-2022. They have proposed 2% wage increases across the board for the 2020-2021, 2022-2023 and 2023-2024 school years.

Over the last 4 years that district has hired 711 individuals to work in Unit D and 728 individuals have left Unit D.  Keeping that data in mind, we are clearly concerned about recruiting and retaining Unit D members. We believe that recruiting and retaining quality staff is in the best interest of the Springfield Public Schools students. 

  • We feel that the districts' step one hourly rate for Para-educators/Certified Nursing Assistants of $17.33/hour is too low to attract qualified individuals and believe that should be increased.

  • We believe that the districts' proposed difference of $0.54/hour for those Unit D members with Bachelor's degree should be increased.

  • While our Licensed Practical Nurses will receive a substantial wage increase per the districts' proposal, the step difference of $.05/step/hour will only result in a $.50/per hour difference between a newly hired LPN and an LPN who has worked for the district for 11 years or more. The hourly rate of the steps should be increased.

  • Our Certified Occupational Therapy Assistants and Physical Therapy Assistants were offered a 2% raise for all four years of the contract.  The step one offer of $27.95/hour is below the market rate, as are the other step difference, and should be increased. 

  • We feel that the districts' proposal to eliminate the financial benefit for taking part in the 30 Hour Professional Development Program. will decrease the earning potential of our members. This is especially injurious to our members who have devoted their working careers to the Springfield Public Schools.

February 14, 2022

Today the district filed a press release stating that they would like to place our negotiations in the hands of a mediator.

In the interest of transparency, they did offer more than 2% to some of our members in the 2nd year of the contract.  The 1st, 3rd and 4th year they offered 2%.  Unfortunately, while they may have proposed increased wages for our newest members, we calculated that their proposals would decrease the earning potential of our more senior members when coupled with their proposal to eliminate our 30 Hour PD benefit.

Wage impact

 

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

  1. Join the extended negotiations team

  2. Take part in contract action events

  3. Speak Out at the School Committee-March 17, 2022

  4. Contact members of the School Committee (they direct the negotiations and vote to approve our contract

  5. Join the Contract Action Team  https://forms.gle/uASmDkmcYmCCwLEy7

SCHOOL COMMITTEE CONTACT INFORMATION

 

Mayor             Chairperson Domenic Sarno                                                 msarno@springfieldcityhall.com                     (413) 734-1173

Ward 6 & 7     Vice Chairperson School Committee Christopher Collins     collinsc@springfieldpublicschools.com           (413) 732-5777   

Ward 4 & 5     School Committee Member Barbara Gresham                     greshamb@springfieldpublicschools.com       (413) 626-9108

At-large          School Committee Member Denise Hurst                             hurstd@springfieldpublicschools.com             (413) 330-1030 

At-large          School Committee Member LaTonia Monroe Naylor             naylorL@springfieldpublicschools.com           (413) 455-0432 

Ward 2 & 8     School Committee Member PeterMurphy                             pmurphylaw@verizon.net                                (413) 262-8752 

Ward 1 & 3     School Committee Member Joesiah I. Gonzalez                  gonzalezjoe@springfieldpublicschools.com    (413-306-7715

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Union Response to District Proposals on 12/8/2021 and Wage Counterproposal  1/10/2022

Springfield Federation of Paraprofessionals