December 18, 2020
OCCTA is pleased to announce that the ratification vote passed with 4,919 votes (66.9%) in support and 2,433 opposed (33.1%). A total of 7,352 members of our bargaining unit voted. You can see the results at this link.
You can read all of the tentative agreements at this link.
A summary and outline of the Memorandums of Understanding and Tentative Agreements is at this link.
Everyone at OCCTA wishes you all a very relaxing break and a wonderful holiday filled with much joy and peace. Stay safe, stay healthy and stay hopeful!
December 15, 2020
See all of the Tentative Agreements for ratification at this link.
See the 12-8-20 Memorandum of Understanding on Safe School during the Pandemic at this link.
Questions and Answers
What happens if we vote “no” and the ratification does not pass?
If the bargaining unit votes to reject the ratification packet, none of the items that have been tentatively agreed to will go into effect and the parties will go back to the table to continue negotiations.
This means that nobody, including those making below $47,500, will receive any wage increases or any of the other negotiated items until the parties reach another agreement or go through the below process.
If we don’t reach an agreement at the table, we must proceed with the impasse process as required by Florida law. Pursuant to the impasse procedure, unless this first step is waived by both parties, a special magistrate will issue a non-binding recommendation. If the special magistrate’s recommendation is rejected by the District, it will be submitted to the School Board who will take such action as it deems to be in the public interest.
If the bargaining unit rejects the School Board’s conclusion, the School Board’s unilateral decision will be imposed and will become part of the new agreement. We could lose some of the gains that have been negotiated.
What is included in the 2020-2021 Salary Agreement?
How did you come up with these numbers?
The money was distributed as equally as possible within the confines of the law. The funding provided by the state has specific strings attached. Due to the requirements of Florida with HB 641, some are getting more than others. It was a priority of Governor DeSantis to raise minimum teacher salaries to $47,500, without regard for the impact it would have on veteran teachers.
President Doromal and OCCTA have been speaking out about shortcomings in the state’s approach since October 2019, in OCCTA newsletter articles, press releases, letter-writing campaigns, actions at school board meetings, and FEA’s Fund Our Future Bus Tour and Rally in Tallahassee. OCCTA and FEA fought hard for additional funding for veteran teachers, but in the end, the Legislature sided with DeSantis.
The distribution of money is only from the money for teachers given in HB 641. The District has not given any other raises this year.
Can’t the District find more money for additional raises, hazard pay, or supplements for teaching face-to-face and virtual classes simultaneously?
The District is bracing for an unexpected hold back of state funding as a result of the drop in state tax revenue since the pandemic started and the potential decreased funding from a drop in student enrollment for this school year.
OCCTA left no stone unturned, the District insisted it did not have another penny citing a loss of over 6,000 students this year, which means the district might face over $51 million less in funding. In fact, we have been hearing, since this summer, that we can expect layoffs in January.
We are following the District’s budget and financial reports closely. The Tentative Agreement requires the District to meet and negotiate additional salary increases if the state provides any additional funding for the 2020-21 school year.
Why didn’t we hold out?
We did hold out! The original District plan was to raise ONLY K-12 classroom teachers to $47,500, leaving out a large portion of the bargaining unit. Non-classroom teachers would not have been brought up to $47,500 and any teachers not already above that would have only gotten a 0.63% raise. We pushed the district to double that (1.27%) and to bring up all non-classroom and Pre-K teachers as well.
Why did we go to impasse?
After we fought to get non-classroom teachers included, VPK teachers were still being left out of the District’s salary proposal even though it would only need roughly $211,000 to include them. This would have created a lower pay scale for a portion of our teachers which is unconscionable and could’ve set terrible precedent. You never know which “portion” of our bargaining unit will be targeted for inequalities next.
OCCTA refuses to leave behind any member of our bargaining unit.
Who is included in this raise?
Every member of the bargaining unit is getting a raise. No one is left out. This includes nurses, psychologists, counselors, deans, social workers, and all teachers, Pre-K, K-12, and career and technical educators.
Did anyone else besides members of our bargaining unit get raises?
No. No other employee in the District will be given a raise this year, including classified personnel and administrators. The District has repeatedly stated there is zero money for additional compensation this year and they are facing major budget shortfalls.
What if they do get a raise later?
OCCTA negotiated that if any other money is “found” for raises for any other employee, including administrators and/or classified personnel, then teachers will get an equal increase of any amount above the 1.27%.
How did Orange County get the base pay of every teacher raised to $47,500 while other counties could not?
The state gave allocations based on FTE. (See this chart.) Some Districts, like OCPS, were given enough to raise their base salary to $47,500; others were not.
Why did a few other school districts get bigger raises?
The majority of districts that received additional raises have local referendums that collect and allocate additional taxes for teacher raises. Orange County teachers received the largest raises in the state last school year.
What is the 80/20 split?
State law (HB 641 and HB 5001) required that 80% of the total allocation be used to increase the minimum base salary for full-time classroom teachers. Districts who had enough funding to reach the $47,500 were mandated to do so.
The remaining 20% of the total allocation, plus any remaining funds from the 80% after increasing the minimum salary could be bargained in accordance with the statute.
How do I calculate my raise under the Tentative Agreement?
Please click here for a salary calculator. By way of example:
Why did this happen so fast?
The District refused to begin discussing salaries until the state released the numbers for the teacher salary allocation in September. Since then, OCCTA met with the District in at least eight (8) different bargaining sessions to negotiate salaries and raises (and countless additional hours of discussions and document review).
When is the ratification timeline determined?
The OCCTA Elections Committee oversees ratification. We are pushing to have it completed as soon as possible, but must follow all regulations mandated by PERC and the State and all rules of the OCCTA Constitution and Bylaws.
When would we see raises?
As soon as the ratification is certified the District will prepare increases and schedule the retroactive check to be released. Increases will be applied as soon as possible.
Is it retroactive?
Yes, the pay is retroactive to the first duty day of the current school year and includes retroactive salary increases and any advanced degree increases if they apply.
November 17, 2020
President Doromal signs the agreements as OCCTA bargaining chair looks on
Today the District and OCCTA reached an agreement on salaries and some working conditions! OCCTA withdrew its impasse declaration after the agreement was reached. We are excited that we could reach an agreement so we can get raises into the pockets of teachers as soon as possible.
All members of the bargaining unit, including the certified VPK teachers, will be raised to the base salary of $47,500. As you know, salaries were determined by the state this year. Legal restrictions meant we could not negotiate the raises we know that all experienced teachers deserve. (Read the Q&A on the salary allocations at this link.) Teachers will receive a minimal raise of 1.27%. Additionally, all advanced degree teachers will receive a 16% increase: $3,342 for a Masters Degree, $5,127 for a Specialist Degree and $6,760 for a Doctorate Degree.
Do teachers deserve more? Of course! Yes, we deserve more, but our state legislators restricted what teachers were allowed to get, focusing on raising all teachers who earn under $47,500 to that amount. As long as Tallahassee continues to legislate restrictions, all we can do is advocate for more "education friendly" representation. Elections really do have consequences!
OCPS didn't want to give anything beyond what the legislation approved (see HB641), but OCCTA worked to make sure every member of our bargaining unit was raised to $47,500 and every member received something. More than that, this one time we were able to get a percentage instead of a flat amount so, while small, that at least it is proportionate for experienced teachers this year. OCPS is even threatening layoffs if more funding is cut in January.
Classified and Administrators are getting zero this year. The state funding was only allocated for teachers. The law dictated how to divide it. Our signed agreement states that if OCPS "finds" more money to give any other raises above what we could eek out teachers will receive that same percentage. Be assured that OCCTA continues to fight, not only for fair salaries but for working conditions and teachers' rights.
Questions and Answers on the agreement are at this link.
Please read all of the agreements at This Link.
Calculate your salary at Download File (2020 Salary Proposal Calculator (4).xlsx)