The Los Altos School District Board of Trustees approved the proposed collective bargaining agreement with the Los Altos Teachers Association 3-0 at its regular meeting last week. The agreement, which is for the current and the next fiscal year - July 1, 2003, through June 30, 2005 - had already been approved by the teachers' union.
The agreement will give 222 teachers a 1 percent salary increase, retroactive to April 1 of this year. Teachers employed in the next fiscal year will receive a 1.84 percent increase. This year's increase will raise beginning teachers' total compensation to slightly less than $48,000 a year.
Board president Victor Reid said that trustees Margot Harrigan and Jay Thomas, who were absent, had told him earlier in the week that they, too, were in favor of the agreement.
In requesting the board's final approval, teachers' union president Amanda Terry said that the "positive and constructive relationship that the teachers association and the administration enjoy" is famous "throughout the country and further."
Noting the probable change coming for the district's revenue structure, she added, "I would like to publicly state the teachers association's willingness to continue to work with the district to provide a total compensation package for employees that would attract and retain quality teachers while maintaining a financially sound budget."
Terry and Reid both described the working relationship between district administration and teachers as unusually positive.
"(Our teachers) provide us the opportunity to be the No. 1 district in the state. We attract outstanding teachers," Reid said.
The three trustees present also unanimously approved the lease agreement with the town of Los Altos Hills for the use of the administrative offices, the multipurpose room and about 1,000 square feet of adjacent ground space on the Bullis-Purissima School site. The town will pay the school district $96,000 to lease the space from the first of this month through July 31,
2005. Other possibilities for leasing the Bullis site are expected to be discussed at the next regular board meeting on May 17.