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LAUSD teachers plan to boycott faculty meetings

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Despite warnings that their salaries will be docked, thousands of Los Angeles Unified School District teachers plan to boycott faculty meetings today as part of their union’s push for higher wages.

Officials with United Teachers Los Angeles said last week that teachers plan to boycott faculty meetings today, April 7 and April 14 as part of their “escalating actions” to push for a more lucrative contract for teachers.

The union and LAUSD are locked in bitter contract talks. The union is pushing for a roughly 8.5 percent pay raise, while the district has offered 5 percent. UTLA has already declared an impasse in negotiations, hoping a mediator can help broker a deal.

According to the union, teachers will boycott the faculty meetings and instead gather in school parking lots or on sidewalks in front of campuses in a “show of strength.” They also plan to distribute “informational materials” to parents.

Last week, LAUSD Superintendent Ramon Cortines warned that teachers who failed to show up at the faculty meetings “will not be paid for the work time missed.”

“I am troubled and disappointed that UTLA is urging teachers not to attend these important meetings,” Cortines said. “This action harms the continuity of the educational process at our schools and sends a disturbing message to students, parents and our community.”

Cortines also said he was concerned about the union’s so-called “escalating actions,” saying it appears the union is moving “toward a planned strike against our students, parents and school communities.”

“Nothing could be more detrimental to the extraordinary educational progress that this district has made in recent years,” he said.

Union officials called Cortines’ comments about docking teachers’ pay a “scare tactic” that will not stop the boycott. They noted the boycott will take place after school and “will not disrupt students in any way.” Cortines has said offering teachers any more than a 5 percent raise would lead to extensive layoffs throughout the district.

The district’s board recently approved the issuance of layoff warning notices for 609 employees, including teachers, counselors and social workers.

Union President Alex Caputo-Pearl has said the layoff threat is also a scare tactic and insisted the district has money to pay teachers more money.

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LAUSD teachers plan to boycott faculty meetings
Despite warnings that their salaries will be docked, thousands of Los Angeles Unified School District teachers plan to boycott faculty meetings today as part of their union's push for higher wages.

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